Buckwheat Noodle Salad with Greens and Walnuts

Buckwheat Noodle Salad with Greens and Walnuts

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar or light-colored honey
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, unseasoned
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce, low-sodium
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger, fresh, very finely minced or grated (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons walnut oil, roasted
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil, Chinese-style, toasted
  • 4 ounces buckwheat noodles, Japanese-style, uncooked
  • 8 ounces of any combination of spinach, watercress, arugula, frisée or other salad greens, very fresh, washed, dried thoroughly
  • 4 or 5 radishes, crisp, fresh, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, medium, sweet, coarsely grated
  • 1 or 2 scallions, finely minced (whites and as much of the green parts as feasible)
  • 1/2 cup California walnuts, lightly toasted, chopped
  • Red pepper, crushed, to taste (optional)

Directions

  1. Place the agave nectar (or honey) in a medium-small bowl. Add the vinegar and soy sauce, and stir until the honey dissolves. Stir in the garlic and salt. Whisk steadily while you drizzle in the oils to make a vinaigrette. Set aside, leaving the whisk handy.
  2. Put up a potful of water to boil. When it boils, add the noodles and cook until tender (about 4 minutes) but still al dente. (Check the package instructions and cook slightly less than indicated.)
  3. When the noodles are done, drain them and rinse them in cold water. Drain thoroughly and transfer to a bowl. Add the salad greens, radishes, carrot, and scallion, along with vinaigrette (whisk it from the bottom one more time before adding) and toss until everything is evenly dressed.
  4. Serve at room temperature or chilled, topped with walnuts and with chili flakes, if desired.