Serious Eats: Recipes

Cook the Book: Soba Noodles with Eggplant and Mango

[Photographs: Jonathan Lovekin]

There are many elements that make up a plate of these Soba Noodles with Eggplant and Mango. Cool, nutty soba noodles; smoky, charred eggplant; bright herbs and chiles; a sweet and sour sesame-rice vinegar dressing; and slices of cool, creamy mango.

It's this kind of vibrant, a little bit out there yet totally balanced dish that makes Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty a truly thrilling vegetarian cookbook. Ottolenghi has a way of melding ingredients from diverse cultures into deliciously cohesive dishes.

This particular plate, a cool starter or perfect spring lunch, marries ingredients that seemingly have nothing to do with one another, namely mango and eggplant. But when the eggplant is charred and mixed with the nutty soba noodles and the tangy dressing, the mango brings the dish together with its sweet bursts of fruitiness boosting the salty, sour qualities of the noodles.

This dish is free of animal products but still filling and fresh. If you want to add protein, throw in some cubes of browned, marinated tofu.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Plenty to give away this week.

Adapted from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi. Copyright © 2011. Published by Chronicle Books. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved.

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