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Posts Tagged ‘somen’

Somen noodles are typically eaten in a cold broth in Japan. It’s the perfect lunch or light dinner on a hot, humid Tokyo day. Seeing as the days here in Chicago have been hot and humid Yuki decided to make a somen dish for lunch on Saturday.

Somen noodles are packaged just like soba, wrapped in individual servings. So, she first boiled two servings of the noodles and then cooled them down in some ice water.

While the noodles were cooling she hard-boiled a couple of eggs and steamed (maybe boiled, I wasn’t paying close enough attention) some okra. When the okra was cool to touch she thinly sliced them.

In a bowl, she mixed equal parts water and yamaki mentsuyu (soy sauce that’s been seasoned with dashi). She also added a few dashes of ponzu to give it a little bit of citrus tang. Then she divided up the noodles and topped them with the okra and hard-boiled eggs. We also had some cherry tomatoes so she cut some of those in half and put them in as well.

That’s all there is too it. Delicious, refreshing, and fully satisfying.

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After visiting the temple complex at Muro-ji in the Kansai region, we had 30 minutes before the bus left back to the train station in order to catch the train to Hase-dera. With empty stomachs we needed food and we needed it fast!

As we walked through the little mountain town towards to bus stop we noticed this little ma & pa shop that served bowls of Somen Noodle Soup. It was cold and rainy and a nice hot noodle soup sounded about right.

The restaurant was a tatami room with traditional short tables and cushions to sit on. Fortunately they also had some short chairs for people like me who are unable to sit cross-legged for more than 2 minutes at a time.

The broth was a light, but flavorful dashi. Tons of perfectly cooked somen noodles. Mitsuba, sliced scrambled egg, shiitake, carrot, and tempura flakes all garnished the noodles. On the spoon was a yuzu-togarashi (citrus and red pepper) paste, my newfound love. Putting it on the spoon like that allowed you to swirl in as much as you like. In a small dish next to the soup were some pickled ferns.

It was so fresh and warming, it was exactly what we needed. Unbeatable at a price approx $6 per. We also got to the bus after eating with plenty of time to spare.

Enough time to grab a quick freshly cooked yaki-mochi dessert. Pounded glutinous rice with yomogi mixed in and filled with red azuki bean paste. Then cooked on a big round griddle.

Take that American fast food joints! I’d like to see you serve up freshly made, healthy, delicious food like that for $6 and in less than 30 minutes.

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