Made from gluten-free buckwheat, soba noodles are a classic of Japanese cuisine, and this recipe for cold sesame soba is worth adding to your repertoire.

Recipe: Cold Sesame Soba

Nic Gossage/

Cold Sesame Soba | House and Leisure

Soba noodles are made from gluten-free buckwheat flour – in spite of its name, buckwheat is a seed, not a grain – and have a unique, earthy flavour.

They are traditionally served in a hot broth, or cold with a dipping sauce. This cold sesame soba recipe is a riff on the latter, with sashimi-grade tuna and some edamame beans adding a punch of protein (and deliciousness) to the mix. Punched up by the salty, sweet-sour and umami flavours in the dressing, this dish comes together brilliantly quickly and (as an added bonus) is very good for you, too.

These days, soba noodles are relatively easy to obtain in SA, and can be found at specialist supermarkets as well as health stores such as Faithful to Nature.

Cold Sesame Soba


  • 400g soba noodles 
  • ½ cup light soy sauce 
  • 1T mirin 
  • 2t sesame oil 
  • 1t caster sugar 
  • 5cm piece ginger, peeled and finely grated 
  • 2t toasted sesame seeds 
  • 250g piece sashimi-grade tuna
  • 1 cup shelled edamame beans
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced 
  • 1 sheet nori, sliced into thin strips


Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Cook the soba noodles according to the packet instructions. Drain and refresh the noodles in iced water, then drain again.

To make the dressing, combine the soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, sugar and ginger in a small bowl. Set aside. 

Sprinkle the sesame seeds onto a plate. Roll the tuna in the sesame seeds to coat, then slice thinly.

Transfer the noodles to a large bowl. Drizzle over half the dressing and toss to combine. 

Divide the noodles among four bowls.

Top with the tuna, edamame, spring onions and nori, drizzling over the remaining dressing.

Serves 4
ALSO READ: Recipe: Japchae
ALSO READ: South Africa's First Mindful Drinking Festival
ALSO READ: The Tokara Spring Menu Reinvents Local Cuisine