Cold Udon Noodle Salad with Tahini-Wasabi Dressing
While most of society is still living on lettuce salads, I have turned to pasta. I can’t do without carbs, people. Carbs comfort me and with many things in my world changing right now, I am in need of comfort. So I figured I could add some fresh veggies to an udon noodle salad and still be OK, right? Just say yes.
I discovered wasabi powder when we were in Colorado in the fall and realized last weekend that I hadn’t opened it. But really, what do you do with wasabi besides mix it with soy sauce when you eat sushi? I grabbed some tahini and just started mixing some of my favorite flavors and ingredients: carrots, peppers, cilantro, sesame seeds, ginger, soy sauce, honey, garlic. I put some udon noodles on to boil and a quick, simple cold udon noodle salad was in the works.
I love quick salads for any day of the week and this one was definitely unique – nutty from the tahini, spicy from the wasabi, sweet from the honey and full of different textures. Comfort in a bowl, if you ask me.
Cold Udon Noodle Salad with Tahini-Wasabi Dressing Recipe
Yield: serves 1 as a main dish; 2 as a side dish
Total Time: 25 minutes
Homemade tahini-wasabi dressing covers a cold udon noodle salad with bell peppers, green onions, carrots and sesame seeds.
for the salad:
2 ounces wheat udon noodles
1 carrot, cut into ribbons (see note)
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, finely diced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp. sesame seeds
for the dressing:
2 Tbs. tahini
1 Tbs. water
1 Tbs. low-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp. wasabi paste
1 tsp. honey
1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
1 tsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. sesame seeds
1/8-in. piece fresh ginger, grated
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt & pepper to taste
Cook the udon noodles according to package directions. When finished, rinse with cold water.
While the noodles cook, combine the carrot, green onion, red pepper, cilantro and sesame seeds in a medium bowl, mix to combine, and set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the tahini, water, soy sauce, wasabi paste, honey, sesame oil, rice veinegar, sesame seeds, ginger, and garlic until combined. Add salt & pepper to taste.
Add the cooked & rinsed udon noodles to the bowl with the vegetables and mix well. Pour the dressing onto the noodles & veggies and mix using two forks until the dressing is disbursed throughout. Garnish with additional sesame seeds. Serve immediately, or refrigerate, covered, for 30 minutes, or up to one day.
To make carrot ribbons: use a vegetable peeler to remove the outer skin of the carrot. Lay the carrot flat on a cutting board and run the vegetable peeler along the full length of the carrot, creating thin ribbons. Cut wide ribbons in half.