white and black sesame seeds, coriander leaves, extra red chilli flakes, lime wedges- to serve
Add chicken, soy sauce, lime juice, ginger, garlic and coconut sugar to a bowl. Mix well. Cover and set aside for 15 minutes.
Prepare the dressing by mixing all ingredients for it in a lidded glass jar. Dressing can be prepared 2-3 days ahead and stored in the fridge until ready to use.
Prepare the soba noddles by bringing a pot of water to a rolling boil and adding the dry noodles to the pot. Cook for 3 minutes until noodles are just done. Remove from heat and drain in a colander. Rinse the noodles several times in cold water to stop the cooking process. Run your fingers through the noodles, they should be loose, non-sticky and clump free. Set aside until ready to use.
To cook the chicken, heat a tablespoon of oil to a large cast iron/non-stick frying pan on medium high. Gently place the marinated chicken in the frying pan. Increase heat to high and cook and sear each side for 1-2 minutes until browned. Reduce heat to low and cook for 10-15 minutes, turning occasionally until the chicken thighs are cooked through. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes before slicing the chicken into strips.
Add the cooked noodles, cooked chicken, French shallots, capsicum, cabbage, snow peas, coriander and basil to a large bowl. Add the dressing and mix toss and mix well until everything is coated evenly with the dressing.
Serve immediately. Alternatively, prepared salad keeps well in the fridge for up to a day and taste great cold. You may also warm it slightly in the microwave before eating.
*Lemongrass Powder - I like to use lemongrass powder or dried lemongrass leaf cuts in my recipes as I don't always have access to fresh lemongrass. If using fresh, use the white fleshy root of 1 lemongrass (chopped finely).Thai Basil - You can substitute Thai basil with regular basil.Soba Noodles - You can use any thin noodles for this recipe, for e.g. ramen noodles, chow mein noodles or plain egg noodles.Make It Vegan - Substitute chicken with tofu. Cut into 1-inch rectangular pieces and marinade and fry as per the recipe. Also substitute fish sauce with lime juice.