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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Soba Noodles with Eggplant & Mango

Will you take me out to lunch at Ottolenghi today? We can meet there, eat piles of Cauliflower Fritters and Fava Bean Burgers and talk about British things.

Considering my little co-pilot may not appreciate a jump across the pond I've settled on cooking my way through Yotam Ottolenghi's new-ish book Plenty while awaiting a generous plane ticket benefactor. This book is gorgeously styled, approachable but thorough, and over the top delicious.

Soba Noodles with Eggplant & Mango:
from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

Serves 6
1/2 cup rice vinegar
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 fresh red chili, finely chopped (I'm still overly intimidated by chili so I just used hot sesame oil which killed 2 birds with 1 stone)
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
grated zest & juice of 1 lime
1 cup sunflower oil
2 eggplants, cut into 3/4 inch dice
8-9 oz soba noodles
1 large ripe mango, cut into small dice or thin strips
1 2/3 cup basil leaves, chopped
2 1/2 cups cilantro leaves, chopped
1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced

1. In a small saucepan gently warm the vinegar, sugar and salt for up to 1 minute, just until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and add the garlic, chili and sesame oil. Allow to cool, then add the lime zest and juice.

2. Heat up the sunflower oil in a large pan and shallow-fry the eggplant in 2+ batches (you don't want the pan to be crowded and steam the eggplant). Once golden brown remove to a colander, sprinkle liberally with salt and leave there to drain.

3. Cook the noodles in plenty of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally. They should take 5-8 minutes to become tender but still al dente. Drain and rinse well under running cold water. Shake off as much of the excess water as possible, then leave to dry.

4. In a mixing bowl toss the noddles with the dressing, mango, eggplant, half of the herbs and the onion. You can now leave this aside for 1-2 hours. When ready to serve add the rest of the herbs and mix well, then pile on a plate or in a bowl.

PS. Dylan enjoyed the soba noodles without the dressing, reserved mango chunks and eggplant. Simply put a few pieces aside at the appropriate stage to feed baby.

PPS. do you like my fall look? I seem unsure of all the checkers.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Oh Sarah this looks lovely! We eat a lot of buckwheat noodles and buckwheat in general. We usually eat them with shiitake mushrooms, clianto, green onions, seseame, garlic etc but mango sound so beautiful! Gotta try it out!
    How do you feel about eating nightshade veggies? How much a week is okay?

  3. It is one of my most beloved recipes. I add a bit of red love to the mix and I think it is a perfect compliment to the meaty eggplant


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