After much boozing, eating, and general slothing over the Christmas period, I decided to kick off 2017 with a 14 day detox. Of course, after making this decision my motivation promptly flew out the window, and I spent almost another full week being a couch-dwelling piglet before finally getting my act together and setting a firm start date for the 9th of January. So here I am on day 2, feeling good except for a slight headache, which I’m putting down to the lack of coffee. Motivation levels: strong.
During the detox I’m won’t be following any kind of program or strict guidelines, just sticking to a completely vegan diet and not drinking any alcohol or caffeine. Also, no bread or pasta, which for me — being a self-diagnosed carb addict — is a necessary evil. So basically I just went out and brought a heap of fresh fruit and vegetables, stocked up on soba noodles, beans, lentils, and brown rice, and am now just winging it in the kitchen to see what I can come up with.
Last night I came up with this: a delicious colourful stir-fry packed full of veggie goodness, tofu, and soba noodles. And even though prepping everything did take a little bit of time, once I started cooking it all came together very very quickly.
3 cloves garlic, minced
3cm piece ginger, minced
1 long red chilli, finely chopped (reserve a little to slice for garnish)
1.5 cups red cabbage, finely shredded
1 carrot, julienned
5 button mushrooms, sliced
3/4 cup snow peas, sliced on the diagonal
1/2 red capsicum, thinly sliced
2 handfuls chopped kale, stalks removed
Juice of 1 lime
150g firm tofu, cut into cubes
2 tbsp coconut oil
2-3 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp hot chilli powder
1/2 tsp fine white pepper
1 tbsp sesame oil
180g soba noodles
Coriander leaves, for garnish
Start by bringing a pot of water to the boil and cooking off the soba noodles — my packet said 4 minutes, but I went with 3 minutes to ensure a firmer texture. Once cooked, drain and rinse well under cold water, then set aside.
While the noodles are happening, prepare all the vegetables and cut up the tofu. Season the tofu with sesame oil, chilli powder and white pepper.
Now you’re ready to stir-fry.
Heat a large, heavy-based frypan over medium-high heat and throw in the tofu. You won’t need any extra oil — just the sesame oil from the marinade. Cook, tossing regularly, until browned all over. Remove from the pan and set aside.
It’s a good idea to wipe the frypan with paper towel at this stage, before adding the coconut oil, garlic, chilli, and ginger. Fry until fragrant but not browned, then add the cabbage and carrot. Stir-fry until the cabbage is starting to wilt (1-2 mins), then add the remaining veggies. Once everything is looking bright and almost cooked through (another 2 mins or so), toss through the cooked soba noodles and tofu, then season with soy sauce and lime juice. If it’s looking a little dry at this point just add a splash of water or a drizzle of sesame oil to loosen things up.
Now it’s time to eat. Divide your noodley creation amongst 3-4 bowls, top with coriander and fresh chilli, and get stuck in.