Friday, September 27, 2013

Soba Noodles with Eggplant and Mango

I love this beautiful dish that C & E got my parents?

Juliet arrived last Friday night, I can't believe it's been a week already!! J has been going for walks in the Gatineau, taking many photos, going to photography classes, meeting me at the gym at lunch, going to yoga with my mom, eating banana bread, watching movies,  vacuming my apt ( is she a great cousin or what?). We also managed to check out Nuit Blance last weekend - in the pouring rain- including a rickshaw ride, some art, and Samuel de Champlain statue.

We ran the army run 5k with Emily, A and 14,000 others.

L to R- El, Ana, Juliet, Emily 

It was J's first 5k race and she did awesome.  This weekend we are heading to MTL for some culture, night life, delicious eats and to see one of my besties Alien. It is Le Mois de la Photo so we are hoping to see some photography exhibits. And by some, I mean many.. J has it narrowed down to 6!

Last Saturday I had a catering setup in the morning. Who knew that setting up tables for a wedding and carrying chairs could be so tiring. This shift doubled as my morning workout.  I came home to a delicious lentil soup and found my mom and J chopping up a storm.  This recipe- adapted slightly from Ottolenghi's Plenty- is delicious. It requires a lot of fresh herbs and chopping but is well worth it! As you know I am a huge huge fan of Ottolenghi. J lived right near his restaurant in London and somehow only realized this after I visited her. Damn!! Next time!

Last time my mom made this she doubled the recipe and my parents ate it for days..this time we did not double it and devoured the whole thing (even though it supposedly feeds 6 and we were just 4). It was a great variation on the standard pasta as a pre-race dish the night before the Army run.

- 1/2 cup rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 garlic cloves crushed
- 1/2 a fresh red chili chopped (or chili flakes)
- 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
- grated zest and juice of 1 lime
- 2 eggplants cut into 3/4 inch dice
- 8 to 9 oz soba noodles
- 1 large ripe mango cut into 1/4 inch strips
- 1 2/3 cups basil leaves, chopped
- 2 1/2 cups cilantro leaves
- 1/2 red onion thinly sliced.

While you are prepping the rest of the ingredients bring a large pot of water to a boil.

In the meantime, make the dressing by combining the vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for up to 1 minute, or until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and add the garlic, red pepper flakes or chili, and sesame oil. Allow to cool, then add the lime zest and juice.

Heat the sunflower oil in a large skillet and shallow fry the eggplant/aubergine in three batches, until deeply golden. Transfer to a large plate lined with paper towels and sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt.

Cook the soba noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, per package instructions, or until just tender. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Shake off as much of the excess water as possible, then leave to dry in the colander or on a tea towel. If you're not using the noodles soon, toss with a tiny splash of olive oil to prevent the noodles from sticking to each other.

In a large mixing bowl toss the noodles the dressing, mango, tofu, eggplant, onions, and most of the herbs. Topped with the remaining herbs right before serving.

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