Friday, April 11, 2014

Daily noodle:noodles with pork and preserved radish

I prepared a complex Chinese style pork broth.


I simmered pork rib bones with a piece of ginger, scallions, leek, carrot, white pepper corns, bay leave, shiitake, rou dou kou (Chinese nutmeg), star anise, cassia, fennel seeds, cumin seeds, Shaoxing rice wine, kelp and light soy sauce.


The pork broth is served with plain straight noodles and shredded pork meat (coming from the pork rib bones) topped with a mixture of very finely chopped ginger, garlic, shiitake and preserved radish. Finely, Chinese cabbage and scallions were added to the soup.
Just before serving I added a dash of pure sesame oil.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Daily noodle: ramen with soft bean curd and chicken

I made this special ramen with Chinese influences, characterized by the combination of pickled mustard greens and soft bean curd.


Noodles are broth, curly noodles with a firm bite prepared from strong wheat flour, kitchen salt and alkaline salts.


Noodles are served in a rich chicken broth prepared from vegetables such as leeks, different type of mushrooms, onions, carrots etc. Spices used are cloves, bay leave, ginger, pinch of nutmeg, pinch of powdered star anise, ground coriander seeds, green cardemom, tiny bit of cinnamon, very small amount of garam massala, black long pepper. Other ingredients used include konbu, dried sardines, mirin, sake, soy sauce, sugar, dark vinegar.


The noodles are topped with soft bean curd, grilled chicken, choi sum (but you can use other green leafy vegetables as well) and pickled mustard greens. I garnished the noodles with raw red onions, Japenese chili powder and

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Daily ramen: onion ramen

Onion ramen, ramen, noodle soup, pork, Japanese noodles, noodle recipe, recipe, noodles, onion
Onion ramen
Lately I bought a lot of white onions, maybe a little too much. Yesterday I decided to use them for a ramen dish. And that's what I did: I prepared onion ramen.

It is a ramen dish with a pork bone soup base. Important contributors to the taste are the pork bones, chicken bones, konbu, sardines and smoked mackerel, mirin and of course the added vegetables (leeks, scallions, carrot and dried yam) and spices (ginger, bay leave, clove). I simmered this soup for 10 hours. Thereafter I removed the ingredients.

Onion ramen, ramen, noodle soup, pork, Japanese noodles, noodle recipe, recipe, noodles, onion
Onion ramen
Onion ramen, ramen, noodle soup, pork, Japanese noodles, noodle recipe, recipe, noodles, onion
Onion ramen
I heated a pan with a copious amount of butter and stir-fried 3 white thinly sliced onions with a bit of bacon. As soon as they started to color I added flour and Japanese beer.
Onions were added to the soup and I let it simmer for another two hours. To enhance flavor I added light soy sauce.

I prepared really curly noodles. Curly noodles can hold the rich onion taste, and tiny pieces of almost dissolved onion, a bit better.

The noodles are served with roasted pork, menma (preserved bamboo shoots) and a slice of kamaboko.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Daily noodle: Chinese style chicken ramen

You know Chinese duck or chicken with that tasty crispy skin? Of course there are different rather complex techniques to prepare the real Peking style duck. But there are also a whole lot of home cooking recipes to prepare duck or chicken with a nice crispy skin.
Basically the chicken has to be marinated for hours and then fried in hot boiling oil.

Chicken preparation

As a fan of chicken with a crispy skin I decided to prepare a ramen dish with pieces of chicken with a crispy skin. I marinated a chicken leg in mirin, dark soy sauce, sake and five-spice-powder (Chinese spice mix obtainable in Asian stores) overnight.
The next morning I fried my chicken on 170 degrees Celsius, resulting in juicy meat covered with a nice sweet and savory crispy skin.


I served the chicken in a hybrid broth prepared of chicken and pork bones, sake (Japanese rice wine), konbu (kelp), leeks, carrot, dried yam, dried sardines (niboshi), pepper corns, bay leave, clove, hon-mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine), light soy sauce, sake, goji fruit (obtainable in Asian stores), brown rice vinegar, sugar.

Ajitsuke tamago


I served noodles that are flat, a bit width and curly. They are prepared from two types of flour and rich in salt and alkaline salts


I topped my noodles with a mixture of stir-fried mushrooms (button mushrooms, shiitake and a European variety known as procini mushrooms), scallions,  ajitsuke tamago and of course that delicious chicken. A sheet of nori (roasted seaweed), garlic ginger paste and sesame oil is added just before serving.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Daily noodles: green tea noodles with salmon and wakame (recipe)

green tea noodles, Japanese noodles, noodle soup, noodles, recipe, salmon
Green tea noodles with salmon and wakame
Another noodle I love is green tea noodles. They are healthy and delicious with a vartiety of ingredients. I served them with slightly sweet grilled salmon and wakame (Japanese seaweed) in a nice sweet and savory stock. You can find the recipe guidelines below.

Recipe green tea noodles (2 servings)

green tea noodles, Japanese noodles, noodle soup, noodles, recipe, salmon
Homemade green tea noodles
160 g strong wheat flour (>13.5% protein)
3.2 gram powdered Japanese green tea
3.4 gram kitchen salt
1.6 gram lye water
64 gram water
(starch to sprinkle your working table and to fold the dough)

Mix the ingredients, knead thoroughly and form the dough into a firm ball. Let it rest for 30 minutes. Dust your working table with starch. Roll out the dough, until you have obtained a thin sheet of 2 mm thick. Sprinkle the dough with starch and fold it (you can find some instructions about dough rolling and folding here). Cut the noodles and loosen them.

Recipe soup (2 servings)

green tea noodles, Japanese noodles, noodle soup, noodles, recipe, salmon
Green tea noodles with salmon and wakame
I served the noodles with 300 ml ichiban-dashi, 3 tablespoon dark soy sauce, 2 tablespoon hon-mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine), 1 tablespoon sake (rice wine), 1 teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of salt. Shortly cook the ingredients to evaporate alcohol and to solve the sugar. Let it cool.

Recipe salmon & wakame

Soak 2 tablespoons of dried wakame (Japanese seaweed) in luke warm water.

Set aside.

Clean a piece of salmon filet with skin (100-120 gram). Co

green tea noodles, Japanese noodles, noodle soup, noodles, recipe, salmon
Homemade green tea noodles
at the upper side with hon mirin. Grill the salmon for a few minutes on  each side on a (water or charcoal) grill. You can also use an oven grill but it takes a bit more time.
Make sure the salmon isn't overcooked!

Slice the white parts of the scallions into thin stripes. Divide the stock over two bowls. Add the noodles. Top with a piece of grilled salmon, wakame and scallions

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Daily noodle: ramen with onsen tamago

Ramen dishes are often served with egg. Sometimes it's just a plain boiled egg, beaten egg, ajitsuke tamago, quail egg, omelet stripes, poached egg or onsen tamago.

Onsen tamago

Onsen tamago is a Japanese type of poached egg, sometimes served with ramen. I served this morning with oily ramen. Onsen tamago is actually a technique to poach eggs inside their shell.

Onsen tamago is named after the Japanese hot springs, called "onsen." Traditionally eggs were shortly cooked in the hot springs, or onsen. Cooking eggs in a hot spring results in a creamy egg yolk and a congealed egg white on the outside. These eggs obtain their structure from the water temperature of the hot springs.

Preparing onsen tamago

Although it may appear an almost magic property of the hot springs, you can prepare an onsen tamago yourself without the hot springs.
Given the fact that egg white starts to congeal at 65 degrees Celsius. Consequently, it is necessary to keep the water temperature at 65 degrees Celsius when poaching your egg inside its shell. If you turn up the heat the yolk will not become as creamy and soft as desired. You have to poach the egg for 30 minutes. Cool it under cold water and peel after 3-5 minutes, or store for later use.
The magic after peeling is great: the strange appearance of the egg white, with the beautiful creamy yolk inside.

As I wrote I served my onsen tamago with oily ramen, also known aburasoba. The ramen I prepared is a dry ramen dish. with a sauce on the bottom. Handmade noodles are served with stir-fried bean sprouts, green onions, simmered pork rib meat, and finally mixed with the oily sauce. You can find some instructions how to prepare this dish here.
If you are looking for information how to prepare your own noodles you can find a lot of information by searching with the search field on the right (use terms such as flour, lye water, alkaline salts, yellow noodles etc.)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Daily noodle: kishimen

Kishimen udon
For today I prepared my own kishimen noodles. Kishimen is in contrast to ramen, a traditional Japanese white salted noodle. Where ramen is prepared with kansui, also known as alkaline salts, kishimen is, just as other white salted noodles just prepared from wheat flour, water and salt.

The origin of kishimen

Kishimen is a wide, long and thin (flat) noodle, originating from the edo period, and sometimes referred to as Imo udon. If you really want to try kishimen noodles you need to go to Aichi prefecture. Do you want to learn more about udon noodles you can find information here. If you scroll to the end of the blog post you'll find other interesting links as well.

Kishimen noodles are officially classified as an udon noodle variety. The noodles are just as udon noodles, and other white salted noodles, high in salt and prepared from a soft wheat flour resulting in a soft structure. The noodles seem to originate from the edo period, and sometimes known as Imo udon.

How to eat?

Kishimen is nowadays served in hot soups, such as miso or curry soup.Traditionally kishimen is served with fish and/or seaweed. A very traditional kishimen dish is kishimen on a zaru or plate, topped with nori. Dipping sauce, scallions and other condiments are served aside.

Kishimen production

Kishimen can be as almost every noodle prepared by hand or industrially.  The preparation processes are roughly the same, and is comparable to that of general udon noodles. Water, salt and flour are mixed, thoroughly kneaded and pressed. A block is formed and noodles are cut. The difference with the general type of udon is that the block is a thin sheet.