Japanese Ramen With A Twist
I lived in Japan for almost four years and during that time I ate a ton of ramen. My favorite ramen shop, Dotonbori Kamukura Shibuya, is located in the heart of Shibuya in Tokyo. I’d take the hour-long train ride to get there, any time throughout the year, just to have a bowl of that delicious ramen.
The restaurant set-up of most ramen shops are very similar. There is one long table surrounding the kitchen, which is always on full display. The diner is able to see exactly how their ramen is made and, of course, I took a lot of notes.
The broth is where the magic happens
A bowl of ramen can be filled with many different types of toppings. Choices ranged from pork and chicken to mushrooms, soft boiled eggs, seaweed, and scallions just to name a few. Anything you desire to have in your ramen is possible. I’ve had corn in my ramen once and it was divine!
Without a good, tasty broth, the whole dish falls apart. The most popular types of broths for making ramen are shio (salt-based), shoyu (soy sauce-based), miso (soybean paste), and tonkotsu (pork bone broth). The broth I’ve had the most of and my favorite of all-time are the miso-based broths, mostly because the soy sauce base was too salty and all the other bases have some sort of animal products in them.
When I first attempted to make ramen, by adding miso to the broth I was able to achieve the body, the color, and the taste of that little shop in Tokyo that I loved. Unfortunately for me, my partner and miso paste do not go well together so I had to go back to the drawing board to create a broth that gives me the same authentic taste without using miso.
It took a few trials and errors but I nailed it!
The trick to making a great broth is the amount of time you allow the water and seasoning to boil. The longer you let the broth cook, the tastier it becomes.
If you’re allergic to fermented foods this recipe was made for you.
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Make noodles the main attraction.
Great ramen noodles make a world of difference. The style of noodles you use will be the reason your ramen goes from a nice attempt to an authentic bowl that keeps you going back for more. The type of noodle that does the trick for me is the ramen noodle, it’s long, thick, and chewy but there are other options. The Soba, Udon, and Yakisoba are all popular options to try.
Finding great noodles in America is a pain but thanks to Amazon I found these Udon noodles that were made in Japan that gave me the authentic taste I craved.
I’m a fan of meals that do not go over thirty minutes from start to finish and this ramen recipe takes less than thirty minutes to make so it is hands down one of my favorite meals to whip up and enjoy.
Here’s what you’ll need:
Udon noodles or Your choice ramen noodles
Coconut oil/Olive oil
Two Soup Pots (One to cook the noodles and the other to make the broth)
Homemade Ramen without miso Recipe
Prep time: 5-7 minutes
Cooking time: 23-25 minutes
Makes: 2 bowls
1/2 large onion (sliced)
1 stalk of scallion
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 cube of vegan bouillon cube
3 tbs of Soy sauce
1 tbsp of Trader Joe’s Everyday Seasoning
1 tbsp of Nutritional Yeast
2 tsp of Dulce
2 tsp of Vegan Fysh Sauce
A handful of Oyster Mushrooms (loosely chopped)
A handful of Shimeji Mushrooms (pulled apart)
5-6 slices of Leeks (both white and green parts)
1 leaf of Bok Choy (largely sliced)
8 cups of Water
2 tbsp of coconut oil or olive oil
1 sheet of nori (cut into four pieces)
Making the noodles:
Add the 4 cups of water to a soup pot along with the 1 tbsp of soy sauce and bring to a boil. Once the water starts to boil add the noodles and cook for 12 minutes. Drain noodles and set aside.
Do NOT leave the cooked noodles in the water, they will absorb most of the water which will overcook them.
Making the broth:
Add 4 cups of water, vegan bouillon cube, sliced onions, Trader Joe’s everyday seasoning, nutritional yeast, dulce, garlic powder, fysh sauce, and remaining 2 tbsp soy sauce to another large soup pot and bring to a slow boil.
Let the broth boil for at least 15 minutes before adding any other ingredients.
After 15 minutes have passed, add the mushrooms and leeks to the pot and cook for another 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes, turn the stove off and add the sliced bok choy to sit for 2 minutes.
Add 1 tbsp of oil to the base of both soup/ramen bowl.
Add the cooked ramen.
Pour the broth over the ramen and top with sliced scallions and two pieces of nori
Eat it while it’s hot and slurp as loud as you can!
In Japan the louder you slurp the more it’s perceived that you’re enjoying your ramen. It’s basically giving the chef a handshake for cooking such a delicious meal. So slurp away!
For the spice lovers
If you prefer to add some spice to your ramen, chop some habanero peppers or sprinkle some chili flakes in the broth while it’s cooking to make a spicy version of this delicious ramen.
Let me know if you’ll try this recipe in the comment section.