Sweet Sesame Soba Noodles

This satisfying noodle bowl takes just minutes to put together, is meat-free and loaded with lots of good-for-you veggies. The sauce also makes a great marinade for veggies that are headed for the grill or a piece of chicken. This recipe makes 2 large servings.

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME: 15 minutes

For the sesame sauce:
1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sugar or honey
2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon ground blast pepper

4 ounces dried soba noodles
1 12-ounce package extra firm tofu, cut into 1/2" cubes
1/2 large red bell pepper, seeded, cored and cut into strips
1/2 sweet or white onion, cut into strips
6-8 brown mushrooms, brushed clean and sliced
4 ounces fresh green beans, woody ends removed and cut in half crosswise
1 large carrot, julienned
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

Combine all sauce ingredients in a nonreactive bowl; whisk to combine and set aside.

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until al dente, about 5-6 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Heat a large skillet to medium-high and add 1 tablespoon oil. Add tofu pieces and cook for 5 minutes, turning the tofu with kitchen tongs about every minute so that all sides of each piece get brown and crispy. Remove tofu from pan and set aside on a paper towel to drain. Leave the pan on the heat.

Add remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan and add onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, green beans and carrot and stir-fry for 5 minutes, until veggies begin to become tender but still retain come crunch and texture. Add noodles and tofu back to the pan, stir in sauce and cook for one more minute.

Remove from heat; serve and enjoy!