recipe: soba noodles with eggplant and mango

I've been so excited to share this recipe with you guys because it is sooo good! I made this incredible noodle dish from the cookbook Plenty and oh my gosh I am still dreaming about it! There's something so good about the combination of mango and eggplant..who knew?! And with the basil and cilantro it was so flavorful and delicious. Can't wait to make this again!!

Soba Noodles with Eggplant and Mango Serves 6
Yotam Ottolenghi

1/2 cup rice vinegar
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, crushed {I'm going to mince it next time}
1/2 fresh red chile, finely chopped
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
grated zest and juice of 1 lime 
1 cup sunflower oil
2 eggplants, cut into 3/4-inch dice
8 to 9 oz soba noodles
1 large ripe mango, cut into 3/8-inch dice or into 1/4-inch-thick strips
1 2/3 cup basil leaves, chopped (if you can get some use Thai basil, but much less of it)
2 1/2 cups cilantro leaves, chopped
1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced

In a small saucepan gently warm the vinegar, sugar and salt for up to 1 minute, just until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and add the garlic, chile and sesame oil. Allow to cool, then add the lime zest and juice.

Heat up the sunflower oil in a large pan and shallow-dry the eggplant in three or four batches. Once golden brown remove to a colander, sprinkle liberally with salt and leave there to drain. 

Cook the noodles in plenty of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally. They should take 5 to 8 minutes to become tender but still al dente. Drain and rinse well under running cold water. Shake off as much of the excess water as possible, then leave to dry on a dish towel.

In a mixing bowl toss the noodels with the dressing, mango, eggplants, half of the herbs and the onion.  You can now leave this aside for 1 to 2 hours. When ready to serve add the rest of the herbs and mix well, then pile on a plate or in a bowl. 

Excited the weekend is here again, and so soon too! I love short weeks. This weekend I am volunteering with the Ovarian Cancer Coalition for their annual walk/run. I've done it every year for the past 10 years and it involves waking up super early on a Sunday but it's so worth it. I love how energized people get about walking for a cure. It's also my brother's last weekend in LA before he moves to New York City. So sad but also really excited for him. I wish I could tag along on his adventure! What are you up to this weekend? Making this noodle dish, maybe?? hehe

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