The nutty flavor and delicate texture of soba noodles pair particularly well with cabbage. The pure white ribs and bright green curly-edged leaves of napa cabbage make any dish look especially nice.
Stir-Fried Soba Noodles with Beef and Cabbage
1 lb. (500 g) boneless beef sirloin or tenderloin, partially frozen
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) soy sauce
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) plus 1 Tbs. peanut oil
2 Tbs. peeled and grated fresh ginger
2 large garlic cloves, minced
4 green onions, including 3 inches (7.5 cm) of green tops, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 head napa cabbage, about 2 lb. (1 kg), cored and shredded
2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml) chicken or beef broth
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1/2 lb. (250 g) snow peas, trimmed and halved crosswise
3/4 lb. (375 g) dried soba noodles
1/4 cup (1 oz./30 g) sesame seeds, lightly toasted
Using a sharp knife, cut the beef across the grain into thin slices, then cut the slices into matchsticks. In a bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, 1/4 cup peanut oil and ginger. Add the beef and stir to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate, stirring occasionally, for at least 1 hour or up to 3 hours.
Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add 2 Tbs. salt and the noodles to the boiling water, stir well and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain the noodles.
Meanwhile, in a wok or large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the 1 Tbs. peanut oil. Add the garlic and green onions and stir-fry until lightly colored, about 1 minute. Raise the heat to high, add the beef and its marinade, and stir-fry until lightly browned, about 8 minutes. Add the cabbage and 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) of the broth and toss to combine. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-high and cook until the cabbage wilts, about 4 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch into the remaining 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) broth. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pan, and stir and toss to incorporate. Add the snow peas, stir and toss to combine, cover and cook until just tender, about 2 minutes. Take care not to overcook; the snow peas and cabbage should remain crisp.
Add the noodles to the pan and stir and toss until well combined. Garnish with the toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately. Serves 4.
Find more simple one-dish dinners in our cookbook One Pot of the Day by Kate McMillan.