Tasty Soba Noodles
This recipe is a super important lesson in flavor. When you nail the right balance of salty, sweet, and acidic, your recipes will absolutely pop and become addictive.
It's all about the sauce. In order of volume, combine soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame seed oil, grated fresh ginger, chopped garlic, and a touch of something sweet like real maple syrup (blends easily). This sauce will be the base of everything else so make a lot of it.
Marinate chicken (whatever kind) in some of the sauce. Get a pan, preferably a cast iron, nice and hot. Sear both sides of the chicken until crispy. I like to throw the entire pan in the oven (heated to 400) to finish cooking, but you can finish on the stovetop if you want.
Next, how about some tofu? Slice firm tofu into square slices, about 1/2 inch thick. Pat the tofu dry and then marinate in the sauce. In a non-stick pan, pan fry the tofu on medium-high heat until crispy on each side. Don't be afraid to burn a little. Rest on a paper towel and keep the oil in the pan for the veggies.
Saute onions and mushrooms first on high-ish heat, then add softer veggies (I did kale and snap peas). Onions should be just translucent and snap peas should still snap--don't overcook or make anything mushy. Master your pan flip technique. Remove from heat.
While the veggies are going, heat water and cook some soba noodles. You could also do rice or rice noodles or anything else.
To make peanut sauce, vigorously stir the base sauce with some peanut butter in a bowl. This make excellent dipping sauce for the tofu and also tastes great over the noodles and veggies.
To serve, pile the veggies, chicken, and tofu on top of the noodles. Add some sesame seeds, sliced scallions, and extra sauce!