Recipe: Udon Noodles and Avocado in Japanese-style Tahini Sauce

Sesame paste isn't just for Middle Eastern cooking!

Vered Guttman
Vered Guttman
Udon salad with avocado and tahini
Udon salad with avocado and tahiniCredit: Vered Guttman
Vered Guttman
Vered Guttman

Sesame paste sauces are common in Japanese cooking. But while Middle Eastern tahini uses hulled sesame seeds, the Japanese version is of seeds that were not hulled and are usually roasted before use. Most Japanese recipes start with the seeds and mash them into a paste using mortar and pestle. Here’s a shortcut using store bought tahini.

The recipe will work well with udon noodles, soba, or linguini.

Mirin and Asian sesame oil are available in most supermarkets in the Far East section.

Toasted sesame seeds are available in most supermarkets in the Asian food section, or you can toast sesame seeds in a skillet over medium heat for 1-2 minutes.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
10 oz. udon noodles
Kosher salt
1/2 avocado, in small cubes
4 green onions, slices
1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted
1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil

For the tahini sauce:
1/4 cup tahini
2 tablespoons mirin
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced

Directions:
1. Cook noodles in salted water as directed on the package. Drain and wash in cool water. Transfer to a large bowl.
2. To make the tahini sauce, put all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth.
3. Mix the tahini sauce with the noodles. Divide noodles between 4 or 6 small bowls and top with avocado cubes, green onion, sesame seeds and sesame oil. Serve at room temperature.

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