Sweet-and-Sour Soba Noodles with Asparagus

Fresh asparagus in a bowl

This sweet-and-sour Asian-style noodle dish featuring lots of fresh asparagus is a lovely spring dinner offering. Serve with a simple tofu dish such as Sweet and Savory Sautéd Tofu, and a platter of raw veggies.

Serves: 4 to 6

  • 8-ounce package soba (buckwheat) noodles
  • 1 tablespoon safflower or other healthy vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 14-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons agave nectar or other liquid sweetener
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 to 4 scallions, green parts only, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Chopped cashews for topping, optional

Cook the noodles according to package directions until al dente, then drain.

Meanwhile, heat the oils in a stir-fry pan or wok. Add the garlic and sauté over low heat for a minute or so.

Add the asparagus and stir-fry over medium-high heat until tender-crisp, about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, wine, vinegar, agave nectar, and soy sauce.

Dissolve the cornstarch in a small amount of water and stir into the mixture. Lower the heat and simmer gently until it the liquid in the pan thickens.

Stir the noodles and scallions into the pan. Season with pepper, then taste and adjust the vinegar, agave, and so soy sauce to your taste. Serve at once, passing around chopped cashews for topping.

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