I used a couple different recipes as my inspiration - adding some ingredients, omitting others. It works hot or cold (we ate it cold for lunch today and I almost liked it even better!), it's good for dinner or lunch, as a side-dish or main course. Soba (buckwheat) noodles fill you up without weighing you down (like after a big pasta dish), and they're good for you without tasting like health food.
So.... RK, my friend, this one's for you:
Spicy Soba Noodles with Chicken
(makes approx. 6 servings)
For the sauce:
1/3 cup soy sauce
3-4 tsp chili-garlic paste
1tbsp lemon juice (plus several round slices of lemon for the chicken)
2tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cayenne pepper (plus more for sprinkling on chicken)
For the noodles:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 inch piece peeled, grated fresh ginger
1 small head of cabbage, thinly sliced
6 scallions, thinly sliced
10-12 oz Soba noodles
salt (for boiling water, and chicken)
3-4 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
oil for pan
Preheat oven to 375. Arrange chicken in baking dish, placing them on top of lemon rounds, sprinkle with salt, cayenne pepper, and a drizzle of soy sauce. Bake for about 30 minutes, until cooked through. Once cool enough to handle, shred/slice into bite-sized pieces.
In a skillet, toast sesame seeds over medium heat, shaking/stirring often until just golden. Place in bowl, set aside.
Combine soy sauce, chili paste, lemon juice, olive oil, honey and cayenne. Set aside.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sautee garlic, ginger for about 30 seconds, then add onion and cook until tender. Reduce heat to medium, add cabbage and scallions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, until tender, but still slightly crisp. Add about half the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes.
While cabbage is cooking, cook soba noodles in salted boiling water (they cook fast - only about 5 minutes needed), drain, and rinse with cold water, and drain again. Combine soba noodles with vegetable mixture and add chicken. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Add additional sauce to taste.
(... and then go get an ice cream cone for dessert :)