I had the joy and pleasure of cooking with author, TV personality, and journalist, Daphne Oz here in Austin at Williams Sonoma. Daphne Oz is co-anchor of ABC’s The Chew, a judge for the Food Network’s Cooks vs. Cons, and author of three successful lifestyle books. Daphne visited us on her book tour and prepared a delicious and quick meal that everyone loved.
I can totally see why Daphne is a co-anchor of a major daytime television show. She is beautiful, intelligent, funny, and definitely has a way to relate with viewers on real life topics. I really enjoyed helping her in the kitchen by prepping out all of her ingredients for her to make one of her delicious, simple, vegan “pasta” recipes. This recipe is from her new cookbook, The Happy Cook. Be sure to check out her cookbook because it’s filled with healthy, simple, and most importantly, DELICIOUS recipes.
Soba Noodles with Cashew Sauce and Fried Shallots:
6 ounces soba noodles
1 cup cashews, toasted and whole (see Toasting Nuts, page 14), plus 1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted cashews
3 medium shallots—1 roughly chopped and 2 thinly sliced crosswise into rings
6 tablespoons grapeseed oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 English (seedless) cucumber, chopped into bite-size cubes
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 Fresno chile, thinly sliced (optional)
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook according to the package instructions. Reserving 1/3 cup of the cooking water, drain the noodles and rinse them under cold water to stop the cooking.
In a food processor, process the 1 cup whole cashews into a butter—this will take 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as necessary. Add the chopped shallot, 4 tablespoons of the grapeseed oil, the soy sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the cayenne and process to combine. Add the reserved 1/3 cup pasta water and continue to process until the sauce is very creamy and smooth.
In a medium nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot rings and cook, stirring often, until they begin to brown around the edges, 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and keep cooking, stirring often, until they are crisp and deeply caramelized, about 4 minutes longer. Add the chopped cashews and 1/2 teaspoon salt and continue to cook until the cashews are glossy, 1 to 2 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine the soba noodles and cashew butter sauce and toss to combine. Serve in bowls showered with the cucumber, scallions, and the fried shallot mixture. If you’re feeling frisky, add the chile for a nice pop of heat!
**This recipe with directions is straight out of Daphne’s Cookbook, The Happy Cook.**