Crisp Chuka Soba with Vegetables and Seafood

Fried Chuka Soba with Seafood and Vegetables

I remember my mother
at the kitchen table
having a coffee klatch
by phone with my aunt,
snacking on a slice of
homemade cardamom bread
and she’d say,
“This tastes like more!”

She’d put the phone down and cut another slice.
My grandmother used to make wonderful cardamom bread,
so it’s  likely my aunt was doing the same.
When we kids wanted second helpings, that’s what we’d say.
“This tastes like more!”

This simple meal, with shrimp, sweet peas,
crunchy and soft noodles is like that—
This tastes like more…


Fried Chuka Soba with Seafood and VegetablesMs. Shimbo says that her mother used to make this  recipe for her when she was a child. Her mother would deep fry the noodles so they were completely crisp, like Chinese-American chow mein. This recipe is a bit lighter because the noodles are pan-fried, but it still uses quite a bit of oil. They look like noodle pancakes and the contrast of crunchy and soft noodles is very nice.

Pan-Fried Crisp Chuka Soba
with vegetables and seafood
Age-chuka Soba Itame-yasai to Shi-fu-do

serves 4
page 344
The Noodles:

  • 13 ounces dried chuka soba noodles
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 3/4 to 1 cup vegetable oil, for frying

Frying Chuka Soba NoodlesBring a large pot of water to a vigorous boil. Add
noodles and cook them al dente, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Test for doneness by removing and biting a noodle.
Drain and toss with sesame oil in a large bowl. Set them aside while you prepare
the vegetables and sauce.

Fry the noodles:

Fried Chuka SobaHeat a skillet and add about 3 Tablespoons of oil.
When the oil is hot, add one-quarter of the
noodles, and press them with a spatula to
make a flat disk about 7 inches in diameter.
Cook over medium-low heat, turning it once,
until both sides are golden and crisp.
Place in an individual bowl.
Repeat for 3 more noodle cakes.
The Toppings:

  • 4 ounces snow peas
  • 2 cups soybean or mung-bean sprouts
  • 1 small head of broccoli, separated into flowerets
  • 2 ounces bamboo shoots, cut into 1″ x 1 1/2″ strips (I didn’t use)
  • 16 medium shrimp (or 8 shrimp, and 8 scallops), butterflied
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (if you are frying the seafood)

Fried Chuka Soba with Seafood and VegetablesCombine the peas, bean sprouts, and bamboo
shoots. In a medium pot of boiling water,
blanch the broccoli for 30 seconds, then add
the bowl of other vegetables. Blanch for another
10 seconds. Drain, cool, and set aside.
Fry the shrimp and scallops separately. Reserve.
Instead, I boiled the shrimp with the chicken stock.
I didn’t butterfly the shrimp either,
though it would have been pretty.
The Sauce:

  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 2 Tablespoons sake
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon shoyu
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon potato starch, mixed with 1 1/2 TBS water
  • Ground white pepper

Combine the chicken stock, sake, sugar, and shoyu.
The Stir-Frying:
Stir Frying VegetablesHeat a wok, and add a little vegetable oil.
Add the shrimp and scallops, and give them
a few good stirs. Add the vegetables, and
stir-fry for a minute or two. Add the sauce,
and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat
to low and add the potato starch slurry. Cook
until the sauce is thickened.
Taste and add salt if needed. Add a generous amount of ground pepper.
Divide the sauce and vegetables over the 4 bowls of fried noodles.
Fried Chuka Soba with Seafood and Vegetables

Other Noodle Recipes from Tess

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Bright Orange Kabocha-Miso Soup Chicken Teriyaki with Orange

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