Cold spicy noodle salad with veggies, peanuts and sesame

Cold noodle salads are popular across South East Asia and prepared in Japan, Myanmar, China and Japan.
This easy to make salad can be prepared with leftover vegetables, meat of fish and or tofu. You can use a variety of noodles including wheat and rice based products. Wheat Soumen and Buckwheat Soba noodles are ideal but you can also use Chow mien Lo mein, Korean Japchae (sweet potato) and some varieties of rice vermicelli noodles. Ramen noodles and what pasta are not as suitable.

Serves 3

For the sauce-
100-120 grams Soumen or soba noodles
1 tablespoon freshly ground ginger root paste
3 tbspns chunky peanut butter
3/4 cup orange juice
4 tablespoons hot sesame oil or use plain sesame oil and 1 bird chilli finely chopped
1/4 cup light low sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted white sesame seeds
Juice of 1 lime
Zest of one lime
100 grams diced pan fried tofu or shredded chicken or cooked shrimp

For the vegetables
1 cup finely chopped red cabbage
1/2 cup finely sliced green onions with stems
1/2 cup peeled and shredded carrots
1/2 cup shelled, steamed edamame beans (cooked green soy beans)
Sprigs of cilantro or chopped Chinese chives and lime wedges to garnish
salt and pepper to taste

Set a stock pot of water with a pinch of salt to boil on a high flame.
Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a large mixing bowl and whisk until fully incorporated.
Taste for salt and pepper. Add more honey for a sweeter sauce and a hot sauce of your choice for a spicier one.
When the water is hot add the noodles and cook until just done but still a little firm. Follow instructions on the noodle packet as cooking times vary for different kinds of noodles. Drain the noodles and toss immediately with the sauce.
Add all the vegetables and toss again. Adjust for spicy, sweet and salt.
Cover and chill.
Remove from the fridge, add a little liquid to loosen the noodles if required. Garnish with lime and coriander leaves.
Serve cold.