A Dose of Ayurveda with your Otsu Noodles

I couldn’t help it but I had to post another soba noodle salad recipe that I made for friends this weekend. Not making soba is like admitting that summer is almost over! This recipe originally came from 101 Cookbooks, but I make a slightly modified version that my friend Jo passed on to me. At first, these noodles have a really mild, cool flavor and then they kick you in the pants with the hotness from the cayenne. I love watching people eat this dish for the first time because their eyes light up when the spiciness hits them.

This dish is Japanese influenced, but I couldn’t help but notice how the six tastes that make a balanced Ayurvedic meal are all present: sweet, sour, astringent, bitter, salty, pungent. According to Ayurveda, each person is unique and needs more of certain tastes to maintain balance in their body. There are 3 doshas or types of energies that are present in variable amounts in each person. The three doshas are vata (comprised of air and ether elements), pitta (fire and water) and kapha (earth and water). The easiest example is someone who is mostly pitta, which is a very firey, aggressive type of personality. This type is best balanced out with colder foods and these tastes: sweet, astringent and bitter. Sounds new agey I know, but I have to admit I am quite intrigued by the concept!

This meal is one that is good for every dosha type, which explains why it is well liked by all that I introduced it to and why you should bring it to a party! For this recipe, I have matched up some of the ingredients in this recipe with their taste categories: sweet – soba, sour – lemon, astringent – tofu (surprise to me), bitter – cilantro, salty – tamari, pungent – cayenne.

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  • summer

    i was *almost* lucky enough to have this two days in a row! amazingly delicious and probably tastes best when served out of a tiffin. now that i have the recipe, i’m going to make it tonight (with co-op procured ingredients, of course)!

  • Rachel S.

    I think I am definitely going to try to make this! Wow, it sounds amazing and I have tons of soba noodles at home, YUM!
    Thanks for sharing.