Food, Salads

Soba Noodles, Chicken & Eggplant Salad with Thai Peanut Dressing – Recipe!

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Soba Noodles are a buckwheat pasta, which are from the rhubarb and sorrel family and despite the name, not related to wheat.  I like to cook with soba noodles for a few reasons; the earthy taste and the quick cooking time.  Soba Noodles are boiled in 4 minutes and have great texture and flavor, which pairs nicely with Asian inspired sauces.

In this recipe, I saute julienned or matchstick cut, eggplant and toss in some rotisserie store-bought chicken breasts, along with shredded carrots and diced red bell pepper for a fresh, but hearty salad.  The Thai Peanut Dressing, adds a tangy kick and sends this salad to a whole other level.

You can prepare this Soba Noodles, Chicken & Eggplant Salad with Thai Peanut Dressing, a day ahead and store in the refrigerator.  This is great recipe to prepare for a few days of delicious work lunches or on the weekend, for a fun gathering or party.  You can serve this cold or at room temperature and it makes a great pot luck dish to share.

Ingredients

12 ounces dried Soba Noodles

1/2 eggplant

2 roasted chicken breasts, shredded

1 bell pepper, diced

1 carrot, shredded

1 1/2 cup bean sprouts

1 sprig fresh mint

1/2 cup fresh cilantro

1 lime

1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

olive oil

Thai Peanut Dressing

1/3 cup peanut butter

1 tablespoons fish sauce

2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoon sesame oil

1/4 cup oelek sambal or other chili sauce

1 tablespoon agave nectar or honey

(Serves 4-6)

To Prepare:

1.  Boil the Soba noodles for 4 minutes, drain and rinse with cold water.

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2.  Cut the skin off the eggplant and slice in half and then in half again.  Slice each quarter into 1/4 inch thick slices and then julienne the slices.

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3.  Drizzle 1/4 cup olive oil into a saute pan and place over medium high heat.  Add the julienned eggplant and saute for 7-9 minutes, or until dark golden brown.  Place on a plate to cool, while you prepare the salad.

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4.  Shred the chicken and set aside.  In a food processor or blender, add all the dressing ingredients and puree, until smooth.

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5.  In a large bowl, add the Soba noodles, eggplant and chicken.  Pour the dressing over the top and toss gently.

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6.  Then, add the bell pepper, carrots and bean sprouts.  Chop the herbs finely and add them to the salad.

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7.  Squeeze in the juice of 1 lime and toss to combine the flavors.  Serve in bowls with a sprinkling of chopped peanuts on top.  Enjoy!

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