Recipe ideas from The Well-Dressed Salad

Soba noodles with purple sprouting broccoli and sweet soy, ginger and chilli dressing

Soba, chewy Japanese buckwheat noodles, have a distinctive nutty flavour. Traditionally, they’re served plain with a soy dipping sauce, but this sweet soy and ginger dressing does them proud. Kecap manis, an Indonesian sauce, is fantastic in Asian dressings as it’s sweet and not as salty as regular soy.




250g/9oz Japanese soba or somen noodles

400g/14oz purple sprouting or regular broccoli, roughly chopped

2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds




5 tbsp kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)

2 thumb-sized red chillies, de-seeded and chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 tbsp finely chopped fresh root ginger

juice of 3 limes

1 tbsp caster (superfine) sugar


Cook the noodles in a pan of boiling water for 5 minutes or until al dente. Soba noodles cook very quickly so check them regularly. Drain the noodles, rinse under cold water and leave in the colander until ready to dress.

Blanch the broccoli in a separate pan of salted boiling water until al dente, about 1 minute. Drain and immediately immerse in iced water. Drain again and dry on kitchen paper (paper towels).

Meanwhile, make the soy, ginger and chilli dressing. Put all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix together. Alternatively, you can blend them in a food processor. Set aside.

Place the noodles and broccoli in a large bowl. Pour the dressing over and mix well. Sprinkle the sesame seeds on top and serve.


The salad can be fully prepared up to 4 hours before serving. If left for longer, the noodles become too starchy. Hold back dressing the salad and sprinkling with sesame seeds until serving.

The featured recipe is from The Well-Dressed Salad by Jennifer Joyce




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