It should come as no surprise that I enjoy reading cooking blogs. 101 recipes is one that I like. It's all vegetarian, mostly vegan, but the blog is well written and there are some interesting recipes. This week's was soba noodles with almond sauce. It sounded good and I'm a big sucker for noodles with nut based sauces, having subsisted on noodles with thai peanut sauce and tofu in my grad schools years. $2.50 bought a big portion from the food truck - it was enough for lunch and dinner. You can still get similar lunches there, although the price has risen to a whopping $4. $1.50 bought a massive slice of spinach pizza, which was my other favorite lunch. I was mostly vegetarian back then. But enough of my grad school nostalgia.
Now, one of my problems with the 101 recipes recipes is that they usually call for unusual ingredients. Believe it or not, I had most of the ingredients for this recipe*, save for the pea shoots. I decided to substitute baby spinach instead. Upon closer inspection, my soba noodles really weren't soba, but that wasn't a big deal. I cooked them up and then made the sauce, which contains almond butter, red chili paste, water and lemon juice. I wasn't paying close attention to the recipe, so I misread the amount of red curry paste to add. I added 3 tablespoons instead of two teaspoons. Ooops. Fortunately for me, my red chili paste is fairly wimpy. The sauce was very red and moderately spicy. I mixed it with the noodles and braised the tofu and spinach. It was tasty, and only a slight bit too spicy. (Disclaimer-I did eat a bowl of jello to quell the burn). If I were to do it again, I'd add less curry paste and would maybe add some ginger and sesame oil, because everything tastes better with ginger and sesame oil. I'd probably also go back to using peanut butter, since it reminds me of grad school.
*it was purely random that I had all the ingredients, but I guess it's like the proverbial monkeys typing - given enough time and they'll replicate Shakespeare's works, and given enough time I'll have all the ingredients for a 101 recipes recipe.