Mushroom Soba Salad

(NC)—The depths of winter. There’s nothing quite like it. You are so far from summer it feels like it will never come and you are still far from spring, so there’s no holding on to that thought either. All you can do is bury yourself inside, bake cookies and cakes, set fires in the hearth, read books, light candles and hope that these dark days are behind us soon.

Something I like to do in winter more than anything else (well, foodwise that is), is eat meals that make me feel like it’s summer again without eating way out of season produce. There are many winter vegetables that make for very delicious meals. Mostly of the hardy variety because they store so well and of course mushrooms, because they are in season all year round!

This salad showcases the many flavours of the dressing with a great texture because of the soft noodles and crunchy vegetables. The addition of the mushrooms makes for an even more inspiring plethora of flavours and there really is a party in your mouth. After I first created this recipe, we ate it for three solid days after. We didn’t have any leftovers that first night… I just made it over and over again. So easy and quick and so delicious and satisfying.

Mushroom Soba Salad

Yield: 2 entrée size servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 8 minutes

4oz buckwheat soba noodles (I used Sobaya wheat and buckwheat brand)
1 tsp oil
6 large white or brown mushrooms, sliced
1/4 of a large red cabbage (about 1/4 lb.), shredded or finely sliced
3 small carrots, grated
4 green onions, chopped
1 large avocado, cubed

1. In a medium sized saucepan, fill with water to within two inches of the top. Add salt to taste (about 2 tsp for a 4-6 cup pot). Set to a boil.

2. Add pasta when water boils and cook for 6-8 minutes or until tender. (al dente doesn’t work too well in this recipe)

3. Drain the noodles and run them under cold water for a minute. Set aside to drain.

4. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat the oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté for about 8 minutes or until slightly golden and soft. Remove from heat and set aside.

5. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, carrots, onions and avocado. Set aside.

For the dressing:

1 clove garlic, minced or grated on a microplane
1 inch of fresh ginger, finely minced or grated on a microplane
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 tbsp Tamari or other soy sauce (low sodium)
1 tbsp Mirin
1 tbsp Ponzu
1 tsp fish sauce
juice of 1 lemon
1 jalapeno, finely minced
1/4 cup minced cilantro
black or white sesame seeds, for garnish

1. Mix the garlic, ginger, oil, Tamari, Mirin, Ponzu, fish sauce and lemon juice in a small bowl.

2. Add the jalapeno and cilantro and stir. Set aside.

Assemble your salad:

1. In the bowl full of vegetables, add the cooked mushrooms and the noodles. Pour the dressing over and toss to coat. Serve on plates with a sprinkle of sesame seeds as garnish.

Elizabeth Nyland, is a well known food blogger who currently resides in British Columbia. The child of an avid hunter and gardener, lean years in her family were filled with plenty of wild caught protein and home grown produce, giving Elizabeth a true appreciation for local food. This appreciation is well documented in her blog,

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