Wow what a crazy range of noodles

It’s difficult not to be impressed by King Soba noodles.

King Soba noodles
Versatility and good nourishment in the kitchen

First, look at their credentials: nearly all their food is organic, fairtrade, vegan, GM free, wheat & gluten free, wholegrain food.

Second, look at their flavour combinations and you begin to realise something really special is going on… pumpkin, ginger and brown rice noodles or sweet potato and buckwheat noodles, green tea noodles, black rice noodles. The noodles are colourful and almost never ever contain gluten.

It seems like King Soba noodles are just about the healthiest fast food going. With their roots in Japanese and Thai food cultures, the focus on ingredients means there’s no poor quality instant noodle food here, just good nourishment and lots of imagination for when you get in the kitchen.



Quick and healthy Chinese noodles – recipe

I don’t know if you saw the Chinese Lantern Festival last week, but while I am still in the mood here’s a quick easy noodle recipe. (Archaeologists have found a bowl of noodles in China approximately 4000 years old. But hopefully this recipe will be a bit newer to you.)

Clearspring have just brought out some instant Ramen noodles which are healthier because they are steamed not fried, and made with wholewheat and brown rice. They come with soup sachets for a Ginger Miso or Soya Sauce flavour.

Peanut Butter Noodles
▪ 500g noodles
sesame oil
▪ 6 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter
▪ 4 tablespoons water
▪ 9 tablespoons light soy sauce
▪ 6 tablespoons tahini or ground sesame seeds
▪ 2 tablespoons sherry
▪ 4 teaspoons cider vinegar
▪ 4 tablespoons honey
▪ 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
▪ 2 teaspoons grated root ginger

1. Cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet. As soon as they are ready, drain and rinse in cold water. Drain again. Toss in sesame oil.
2. Place the rest of the ingredients in a blender with 2 tablespoons of sesame oil and whiz until smooth. Add hot water and blend again if the sauce is too thick.
3. When you’re ready to serve, toss the noodles in the sauce and make sure they’re well-coated. Garnish with slices of cucumber, chopped roasted peanuts and finely chopped spring onions.

Celebrate Chinese New Year with Long Life Soup

The Chinese New Year is starting next week. People born in the Year of the Rabbit are said to be the luckiest among “the twelve animals.”

The Chinese New Year is about the coming of Spring. Families gather together, houses are cleaned, new clothes are bought (I could see some people getting into that part in a big way!)

Longevity noodles are sometimes served (this gives me a great opportunity to mention Gluten-Free Noodles from Eskal) recipe below. It’s a beautiful time full of tradition and honour, ending 15 days later with the stunning Lantern Festival.

There’s lots of ways to celebrate the new year. And I’ve found a stack of recipes on the BBC site but here’s one I think they missed.

Long Life / Longevity Noodles.
Serves 5 to 6

2 litres water
1 teaspoon salt
200g dried thin noodles or spaghetti
1 litre chicken stock
1 tablespoon soy sauce, to taste
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons arrowroot or cornstarch mixed with 4 teaspoons water
White or black pepper, to taste
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 spring onions, finely chopped
200g chopped cooked ham

1. Bring the salted water to a boil and parboil the noodles, using chopsticks to separate them. Rinse the noodles repeatedly in cold water and drain thoroughly. Divide the noodles equally among soup bowls.
2. Bring the broth or stock to a boil over medium heat. Stir in the soy sauce, sesame oil, and pepper. Give the cornstarch and water a quick re-stir and stir it in.
3. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Add the beaten egg, pouring it slowly through the tines of a fork and stirring rapidly in one direction for about 1 minute.
4. Pour the hot broth over the noodles. Garnish with the chopped ham and spring onion.

Quick Vegetable and Noodle Stir-Fry

Vary the vegetables in this stir-fry depending on what you have available.

Serves 2

1 pack (250g) Clearspring Organic Soba or Organic Udon Japanese noodles
2 onions (cut in half moons)
1 carrot, cut into fine matchstick size pieces
Half a head of broccoli (2 cups), cut into small florets
1 cup finely shredded white cabbage
2 tbsp sweetcorn

2 tbsp black olives or capers
Finely chopped spring onions

Clearspring Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp Clearspring Toasted Sesame Oil
2 tbsp Clearspring Organic Shoyu or Organic Tamari Soya Sauce
2 tbsp Clearspring Mirin
2 tbsp fresh ginger juice (grated and squeezed from whole root)
Sea salt

1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil and add the noodles. Cook at medium heat, uncovered, until done. Rinse under cold water and drain.
2. Sauté the onions uncovered with some olive oil and a pinch of sea salt, for 10 minutes. Add the carrots, cabbage and corn, cover and cook on a medium heat for 7-10 minutes.
3. Boil the broccoli separately for 3-4 minutes. Rinse under cold water and drain.
4. Add the cooked pasta to the sautéed vegetables, together with the rest of the seasonings to taste.
5. Add the broccoli and garnishes. Serve.