After craving Ramen Noodles for months and months, I finally broke.
I found a relatively easy looking recipe, which used plain language and explained
all most of the Japanese terms.
For the ingredients I went to Yang Kuang, on 12 Passeig de Sant Juan near Arc de Triomf. This is a brilliant wee store specializing in imported Chinese food. I found most of the ingredients I needed, enough to not feel bad about ignoring the rest anyway. I also bought a bag of frozen pork and vegetable dumplings for about 2.75 Euros, and they tasted awesome!
If you go looking for this place, ignore the other poncy ‘gourmet’ shops on the street. You will get half the selection and pay double the price. Yang Kuang looks like a warehouse and the produce is all garish plastic, and vacuum packed bags with cheap paper labels. A more reassuring sign of authenticity than wicker baskets and pretty labels.
Anyway, almost 24 hours after starting to cook…… ta da!
The recipe I kinda followed:
I used ready made chicken stock, ginger paste and pepper to make the soup, instead of this whole carry on (described below). I used Pak choi instead of spinach, and I couldn’t find naruto (a slice of cured fish with a pink swirly pattern). I bought spicy bamboo shoot instead of shinachiku and cheap rice wine instead of sake.
Note: Don’t be a eejeet like me and ask the Chinese shop girls about the ingredients; although they all have Chinese origins the recipe uses Japanese names.
Ingredients: (for 4 servings)
1kg chicken bones for 1.5 liter chicken soup,1 white onion (leek), 30 grams ginger, 2 liters water, 4-5 tablespoons soy sauce, 3 tablespoons sake, 1/3 teaspoon salt, a little pepper and sesame oil, 4 balls of chinese noodles, 8 pieces yakibuta (chinese pork ham), 4 pieces naruto, 1/2 bunch spinach, 1/2 sheet nori, 1/2 green onion, a little shinachiku (chinese flavored bamboo shoots)
1. Clean chicken bone, remove fat and sinew, wash well. Then cut it into large butsugiri.
2. Boil water in pot, put bones in it. Boil bones until the color of the bone changes. Place bones on strainer to drain water.
3. Prepare a large deep pot with water (1.5 liter), leek, ginger, and bones together. Start to boil on a high flame.
4. When it comes to a boil, skim the scum.
5. Continue heating for 1 hour with mid-low flame, while skimming the scum often.
6. Filter it on the bowl by strainer with thin cloth or kitchen towel on top. Add Soya sauce to taste.
1. Cut spinach into strips and steam.
2. Cut nori into quarter sizes.
3. Slice green onion into thin koguchigiri (thin slice), soak in water, then dry with cloth or paper towel.
Putting the dish together:
1. Heat up soup stock, add soy sauce, sake, salt, pepper and sesame oil.
2. Boil water in a large pot, boil noodles till just cooked (about 4 min).
3. Set serving bowls warm, pour soup, put noodles.
4. Add yakibuta, naruto, spinach, shinachiku and nori on top.
5. Shake pepper and garnish with green onion as desired.
This is the most common way to make Shoyu Ramen. To make it much easier use ready made soup sock.
If yakibuta pork is not available, make it as follows:
Set 600 grams of pork block tied with cotton string in tsukejiru soup for a while. Tsukejiru (1 teaspoon grated ginger, 3 tablespoons of each sugar, soy sauce and sake, a little pepper). Put oil in a chinese frying pan, fry the block of meat until it browned, add rest of tsukejiru in to pan and cook in the oven till tender (about an hour).