Noodle-Tofu-Broccoli Casserole

3/4 pound spiral noodles, cooked and drained
2 broccoli stalks, steamed and cut into small chunks
1 pound tofu, drained
1-1/2 tablespoons light miso 
1 tablespoon umeboshi vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons tahini or sesame butter
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons kuzu, dissolved in 1-1\2 cups water
2 cloves garlic

Oil a large, shallow baking dish. Line it with noodles and broccoli. Set aside.
Combine tofu, miso, umeboshi vinegar, soy sauce, tahini, lemon juice, dissolved
kuzu-water mixture, and garlic in blender or food processor and blend until
smooth. Pour this mixture over noodles and broccoli, covering them completely.
Bake at 400 deg F. for 40 minutes, or until top browns and cracks slightly.
Serve garnished with chopped parsley.

Miso is a protein-rich fermented soybean paste made from ingredients such as
soybeans, barley, and brown or white rice. Miso is used in soup stocks and as
a seasoning. When consumed on a regular basis, it aids circulation and
digestion.  Mugi miso is usually best for daily use, but other varieties
may be used occasionally. Quick or short term misos, which are fermented for 
several weeks, are less suitable for frequent use; their salt content is
higher than that of the longer-term varieties such as mugi and hatcho miso. 

Tahini is a nut butter obtained by grinding hulled white sesame seeds until 
smooth and creamy. It is used like sesame butter.

Sesame Butter is a nut butter obtained by roasting and grinding brown 
sesame seeds until smooth and creamy. It is used like peanut butter or in
salad dressings and sauces.

Umeboshi Vinegar is a salty, sour vinegar made from umeboshi plums. Diluted  
with water, it is used in sweet and sour sauces, salads, salad dressings, etc.

Kuzu is a white starch made from the root of the wild kuzu plant. In this 
country, the plant densely populates the southern states, where it is called 
kudzu. It is used in making soups, sauces, desserts, and medicinal beverages.

Tofu is soybean curd, made from soybeans and nigari. Tofu is a protein-rich
soyfood used in soups, vegetable dishes, dressings, etc.