Saturday, May 1, 2010

Green Tea Soba Noodles with Octopus, Olives, Sea Weed & Sun Dried Tomatoes

I am proud to welcome Silvia Gregori, a personal chef from San Francisco, and author of the fantastic blog, Citron et Vanille.  Her cuisine is fused with French and Italian influences, reflecting her distinctive familiar background. Not only is her blog well-written, but her recipes are delicate and sophisticated. Silvia is a true artist as cook, wonderfully plating her balanced and harmonious courses. Get ready for some serious Mediterranean Chic.

When Lazaro wrote an article about, Inspiration: Citron et Vanille, on Blogcritics, I felt more than flattered. Then when he requested I write a guest post for his blog Lazaro Cooks, which is a gold mine of information and creativity, I was very excited. In truth, I was thrilled that he would allow me to express myself on this blog; where he shares his beautifully written posts and mouth watering dishes with its unique creative touch.

Obviously if you are reading this, you know Lazaro and his wonderful personality of encouraging everyone. He always has the right words to make you feel like a star. I humbly accepted because he cooks and writes with style and more so, he has an incredible knowledge of the world’s best chefs and gastronomy. We do share the same culinary "foundations", so it is my great pleasure to share this with you.


I decided to feature a lovely and uncomplicated dish inspired by one of Alain Ducasse's recipes (who is one of my favorite modern chefs) that I changed and twisted around. I nonetheless kept its "true spirit" which is the combination of Asian and Western flavors, and yes it works "à merveille".

What's more Asian than green tea soba noodles and sea weed? Or more Mediterranean than Kalamata olives and sun dried tomatoes? Not many things. Well when East meets West, their encounter creates a volcano of new irresistible flavors, that match and complete each other to perfection...and yes there is a lot of chemistry between those two!


I wanted to feature octopus, often used in Mediterranean cuisine, because I noticed many people tend to look at it as an unappealing and fastidious ingredient to prepare. I somehow wanted to show the other "face" of octopus, a really fabulous and light mollusk to consume.


Green tea soba can be purchased in any Asian supermarket, I also used sea weeds that I bought in France, I am certain than any Asian supermarket carries them too in the US. Basically they look like spaghetti strands (called "Spaghetti de Mer" in French and coming from Brittany, or also known under the more proper name of Himantalia Clongata). They have a subtle flavor unlike some other sea weeds. In France they are used to decorate dishes, add some colors and texture with a nice Asian touch.

Ingredients for 2-3

5.29 oz (or 150 g) green tea soba noodles
8 baby octopuses
2 tbs sun dried tomatoes, chopped
8-9 Kalamata olives, chopped
Some sea weed strands, soaked in water
1.5 tbs soy sauce
1.5 tbs oyster sauce
2 tbs celery leaves, for garnish
Juice of one lemon

Preparation

Soak sea weed strands in water for 15 minutes, and then cook for 15 minutes in the soaking water.

Clean octopus and cook in boiling water with lemon juice for about 30 minutes. Drain and cut in medium size pieces. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl combine, oyster sauce, soy sauce and bring to a boil for a few minutes. Pour in a mixing bowl. Add octopus, sun dried tomatoes and olives.

Cook soba noodles in salted boiling water for about 5-7 minutes while still firm. Place in a chilled water and let them cool.

Add noodles to the bowl containing the other ingredients. Toss well and add celery leaves for garnish.

37 comments:

  1. Silvia,

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe with us. You inspire me everyday with your beautiful cuisine. My wife is urgently requsting that I make this dish for her. You made quite an impression. Cheers!

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  2. Woah. This looks so decadent yet at the same time so simple! I don't think I've ever had octopus, because, yeah, it's a little scary. ;)

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  3. Wow, truly a wonderful collection for east meets west, a lot of flavors going on there! I've had octopus before but it seems to be tough. This looks wonderful and simple enough to try. Thank you for this great post!

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  4. Wow.. the oriental/mediterranean mix is brilliant! Love octopus but rarely make it myself... This sound light and delicious... thanks for the great recipe!

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  5. Silvia, I love this combination of flavors - so interesting! And now I am also looking forward to checking out Lazaro's blog!

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  6. It's been so long since I've had octopus but squid or calamari makes it onto my plate fairly regularly. All of the ingredients makes this sound especially wonderful!

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  7. Wow is right. What an incredible dish. I love the use of baby octopus, though I am certain I will never find them here where I am currently residing. I have had them in a marinated cold salad, (Chinese restaurant I think) and they really are much better than most people would assume. Because they are so small, they are very tender. How nice of you to bring Sylvia and this dish to us. Thank you Lazaro.

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  8. Oooooooooooh! Si belle! I just had udon last night, but right now you've hit all the right ingredients to add to this lovely soba dish. Had no idea that green tea soba existed. I'll definitely have to scout some out here in my little city.
    Have always wanted to check out your blog and will have to do so in the near future. Thanks for sharing/inspiring!

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  9. A unique recipe that sounds simple and elegant at the same time!...In a very short time, I have found this blog to be one of incredible kindness and immense flavor, a perfect combination!

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  10. Sounds delicious and looks very refined.
    Great combination of flavours.
    Wishing you a wonderful weekend x

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  11. What a beautiful dish! Good luck making this, Lazaro! I have no doubt it will be just as wonderful!

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  12. Ooh, I want some green tea soba noodles!
    Elegant and inspiring recipe, Silvia...

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  13. A terrific dish! The green tea soba noodles are very unique and I love the pairing with octopus!

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  14. the green tea noodles look really woderful--i'm going to find those! Thanks for the great recipe.

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  15. I agree, terrific!!!
    Love noodles with octopus!Sounds all so yummy!
    Annalisa

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  16. Thanks Silvia! Marvelous noodle dish! I love the infusion of flavors used here.

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  17. I have never heard of Green tea soba- Thanks for the intro- I will have to check it out.
    The dish looks amazing and the photos are great.
    Hope you are enjoying your weekend.

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  18. Fabulous combination of flavors and textures - love it! Thanks for sharing such inspirational, creative cuisine XO

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  19. Thanks so much for the inspiration! I have a lone octopus in my freezer and was not very inspired actually! the idea of pairing it with noodles and sea weed is a great one.

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  20. This is beautiful - simple and elegant - a wonderful fusion of flavors! I find this very inspiring!

    Lazaro, what a perfect choice for a guest post! Bravo!

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  21. What a lovely guest post! I've never had octopus, but I would absolutely eat it in this beautiful dish!

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  22. Nice guest post! I don't do a lot of Asian cooking and found the info about seaweed most helpful. Will check it out at my Asian market.
    Also, thanks for introducing me to Gera's blog!

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  23. I'm so impressed with your East meets West dish, Silvia! Like you said, it is lovely and uncomplicated, which is just the sort of dish I love to try. I'll have to be on the lookout for green tea soba noodles. Great guest post!

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  24. What a delicious fusion of flavors! I haven't heard of Green Tea Soba before. Would love to try them!

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  25. Green tea soba noodles! Now I know what I want for my birthday!

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  26. you had me at green tea soba... never had it but would love to try it.. not scared of octopus either... this fusion is brilliant... would love, love to have it right now!

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  27. What a spectacular dish indeed! Green tea soba noodles with seaweed sounds like a perfect combination already, but to add olives, sun dried tomatoes, and octopus? What an explosion of flavors!!!! Thank you for sharing this lovely recipe Silvia and thank you for the great guest post Lazaro.

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  28. What a powerhouse of flavors! Beautiful.

    This was a wonderful guest post. Thanks!

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  29. This is the first time, I have been at your blog and I am impressed. I am looking forward to returning.

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  30. Woah! That is fantastic! You had me at Alain Ducasse! This is East meets West with a level of superlative sophistication. Loving it!

    Fantastic culinary journey, this one!

    Ciao, Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

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  31. A very unique recipe! I love green tea soba.

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  32. Nice presentation!Looks so delicious!

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  33. This is truly an exotic fusion and very fancy! Definitely an eye-opener for me :)

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  34. Green tea soba noodles are so refreshing. I enjoy
    Citron et Vanille blog.

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  35. I love green tea soba and octopus and this is a brilliant use of both, Silvia. The balance and harmony is perfect! I cannot imagine a better "marriage" of East and West. Thank you both for a truly wonderful post!

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  36. Wonderful guest post! I didn't know green tea soba exists until now. I've enjoyed reading both of your blogs.

    Tanantha

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  37. What a beautiful dish. And green tea soba noodles? I definitely need to seek out some of those. That sounds great!

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