For the dressing
- 100ml (3½ fl oz) mirin
- juice of 2 limes
- 2 green chillies, deseeded and finely diced
- 25ml (1fl oz) Japanese rice vinegar
- 60ml (2½ fl oz) soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon light muscovado sugar
For the noodles
- 250g (8oz) soba noodles or rice noodles light oil
- 1 cucumber, finely diced
- 1 mango, peeled and finely diced
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
- ½ small red onion, finely diced
- 1 bunch of coriander leaves, chopped
- handful of mint leaves, chopped
For the Tempura Vegetables
- 1 litre (1¾ pints) sunflower oil
- 330ml (11fl oz) ice-cold sparkling water
- 180g (6oz) plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 2 eggs
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 25g (1oz) black sesame seeds, toasted
- 25g (1oz) white sesame seeds, toasted
- 2 courgettes, quartered and cut into
- 10-cm (4-inch) batons
- 1 red pepper, cored, deseeded and cut into 10-cm (4-inch) batons
- 1 yellow pepper, cored, deseeded and cut into 10-cm (4-inch) batons
- 2 carrots, thinly sliced
1. To make the dressing, put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix together well.
2. Cook the noodles in a pan of boiling water according to the packet instructions. Transfer to a sieve and cool under running water, adding a drop or two of oil to prevent them from sticking together. Tip into a mixing bowl, add the cucumber, mango, chilli, onion, herbs and 50ml (2fl oz) of the dressing and mix together well. Set aside.
3. For the tempura vegetables, fill a large saucepan or deep-fryer with the sunflower oil and heat to 180°C (350°F), or until a cube of bread thrown into the oil browns in 30 seconds.
4. Put the sparkling water, flour, eggs, baking powder and sesame seeds in a bowl and whisk together briefly to form a batter (don’t overwork this; it’s fine if it is slightly lumpy). Working in batches, lightly dust a handful of the vegetables in flour and dip them into the batter. Fry the vegetables for about 3–4 minutes until lightly golden, remove from the pan and turn out on to kitchen paper to drain off the excess oil. Repeat with the remaining vegetables, being sure to remove any excess batter from the pan before frying the next batch.
5. Serve the tempura vegetables alongside the noodle salad, with the remainder of the dressing in a bowl as a dipping sauce.
*TIP* If you would like to make this gluten-free, substitute gluten-free plain flour for the
regular plain flour used here. However, note that you may need to use a little more
of it to achieve the desired thickness of batter.
For more recipes from Mildreds: The Vegetarian Cookbook by Sarah Wasserman (Mitchell Beazley, £25) click here