Soba Noodles in Kombu Broth

A package of kombu from the farmer's market.  Less than $5 per package.  We bought two!
A package of kombu from the farmer’s market. Less than $5 per package. We bought two!

This recipe from the “Forks Over Knives Cookbook” is outstanding.  If you want a big bowl of hot vegetables with filling buckwheat soba noodles just like sensei used to make, this is the dinner for you!

The key to this flavorful dish is the somewhat hard to find kombu.  It is dried seaweed that can be found in natural food stores, Asian markets, or maybe the international section of your local grocery store.  We found kombu at the Eastern Market farmer’s market in Washington, D.C..  Although kombu is seaweed, it does not taste “fishy” or even salty.  The kombu broth is smooth with a distinct umami flavor (meaty without meat).  The resulting fresh vegetable soup is familiar and flavorful.

Soba noodles can also be found in the international section of your local grocery

Oyster mushrooms, which you can grow at home if you're adventurous!
Oyster mushrooms, which you can grow at home if you’re adventurous!

store.  I love soba noodles.  They are delicate, made from whole grain, and they cook in only 4 minutes!

Ingredients:

1 4oz package soba (buckwheat) noodles, cooked according to package directions and kept warm

1 Large piece kombu

2 Pounds shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin

1 Pound oyster mushrooms, sliced thin

2 Carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks

1 Napa cabbage, chopped thin

1 Bunch spring onions, white and green parts sliced at a diagonal

1/4 Cup reduced sodium soy sauce

Submerge the kombu in 8 cups of water in a large pot.  Boil the kombu for 20 minutes.  Remove the kombu with tongs and discard or compost.  Add the shiitake and oyster mushrooms, carrots and soy sauce.  Simmer the vegetables over medium heat for 10 minutes.

Divide the cabbage and soba noodles between 4 bowls.  Top with the simmered vegetables and kombu broth.  Sprinkle the spring onions on top to garnish.

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