Makes 4 servings
If you'd prefer, substitute soba noodles for the udon noodles. For vegetarians, the salad is delicious minus the scallops; just add more mango or vegetables.
For the noodles
8 ounces udon noodles
For the sauce
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
1 teaspoon chili paste with garlic, or to taste
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
½ teaspoon minced fresh ginger
½ teaspoon sugar
To complete the recipe
1 tablespoon canola oil
10 ounces (about 12) sea scallops (halve if very large)
1 mango, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch chunks
½ red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 medium scallions, diagonally cut into thin slices
Toasted sesame seeds for garnish
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat; add the noodles. When the water returns to a boil, stir occasionally to separate the noodles. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook until al dente, about 7 to 9 minutes, or according to package instructions.
While the noodles are cooking, combine the sauce ingredients in a medium bowl; whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Adjust the seasoning to taste; set aside.
Also while the noodles are cooking, heat the oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the scallops; cook, stirring occasionally, just until they are firm with opaque and white centers, about 2 to 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a medium bowl; allow to cool.
When the noodles are done, drain and rinse well in cold water, then drain again. Transfer the noodles to a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of the sauce and toss; set aside to cool.
Add the mango, bell pepper, and scallions to the scallops; toss. Add the remaining sauce and toss again.