A new trend in food has taken over the internet. Ramen is a Japanese noodle dish made of flavored boiled wheat flour, salt and water that can be served either hot or cold with various toppings. At home, this popular Asian staple becomes easy to make with less expensive ingredients like chicken broth instead of pork bones, instant noodles rather than ramen noodles and fresh veggies for topping
Ramen is a popular Japanese dish that can be made at home. This recipe will show you how to make a delicious ramen broth.
During my freshman year at the University of Georgia, I remember spending many late nights staring down into a styrofoam canister, slurping ramen noodles in the hopes that said consumption would somehow alleviate the foreshadowed morning of pain, a result of the one-too-many-drinks I’d consumed hours earlier downtown.
That was back in the day. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I have a love-hate relationship with the dish. I’m not referring to the freeze-dried noodle multi-packs available at Walmart. I’m talking about genuine ramen, which is popular among the Japanese and, more recently, the rest of the globe. I say “love-hate” half-jokingly, since I’ve never met a nice bowl of ramen that I didn’t like. I believe I mean it in the nicest possible manner when I say that once I have ramen on my mind, I’m on a never-ending quest to satisfy that need. I’m in desperate need of a bowl of ramen, like a gloomy teenaged teenager.
Clearly, I’m not alone, since ramen has spawned pop-ups, Japanese-style izakayas (gastropubs), and even airport cafes that promise to faithfully imitate the dish in its original form.
This isn’t unexpected, given how much true ramen has to offer. It’s a delightfully informal food — the Japanese actually stand and slurp it for a short lunch — and it’s relatively inexpensive in its natural home (not so much in the trendy ramen joints here in the States!). Then there’s the sensational flavor: A thick, delicious, and fatty soup, flavorful and seasoned with toothsome noodles, and topped with a plethora of toppings that encapsulate everything fantastic about comfort food. One might argue that outstanding ramen, like great gumbo or chili, may predict the future.
However, unlike the other soups/stews you undoubtedly like eating out and creating at home, the prospect of making ramen in your own kitchen seems to be somewhat daunting. However, this does not have to be the case.
The Home Chef and Ramen
True ramen has a reputation for being very difficult to prepare. This, of course, just adds to its allure among foodies, who like meals that strive for the greatest level of competent preparation. Ramen chefs spend a lifetime honing their craft, stewing and brewing delicately nuanced stocks that might take days to perfect before being served in a meal meant to be slurped up in one sitting (or standing). Ramen cooks, like great pit masters, are really renowned and even honored for their craft.
Despite its famous culinary position, ramen is a meal that can be made at home if you follow my cooking mantra: Keep it simple, stupid! Start with a simple version of ramen rather than a more elaborate one. Focusing on a few key components, employing good technique, and a desire to learn are all necessary qualities for producing this meal authentically on your own.
But that’s not me speaking; after all, ramen isn’t my strong suit.
Instead, I contacted a dear friend and the lady who was instrumental in introducing me to this meal in the first place. Say hi to Sarah Gavigan, fellas.
During her 20 years as a music executive in Los Angeles, Sarah developed a fondness for ramen. Weekends were spent exploring the Japanese-oriented districts of Los Angeles with her husband Brad, including Little Tokyo on the West Side near Sawtelle St., downtown, and Torrance.
“Life was bereft of that pleasure when I moved to Nashville,” Sarah laughs, “so I confronted it straight on.” So it started, night after night, with the breaking up of pig bones and the brewing of them in 100-pound stockpots. I recall her telling me about her propensity of preparing pig broth to absurd proportions at late-night gatherings. Sarah progressively worked her way to mastery of the dish after her personal baptism by fire and a desire to learn. Despite the early buzz generated by her pop-up success (Otaku South), she chose to stay focused, declining expert instruction in favor of a year of trial-by-doing – a serious commitment. The effort paid off — as it usually does, gentlemen. There are no quick fixes when it comes to long-term success. Sarah currently runs two popular Nashville restaurants and has received several awards for her work.
So, back to the homemade ramen… Let’s get started!
How to Make Homemade Ramen
I’ve mentioned it before about gumbo, but there are as many different versions of ramen as there are cooks. Professor of Japanese history George Solt even claims that there are as many different forms of ramen as there are ramen cooks (you might want to check out his book for further ramen goodness). However, there are a few tried-and-true factors that should be kept in mind. After considerable deliberation, we chose to concentrate our efforts on shio ramen, which translates to “salt” ramen and includes chicken and chicken broth. This was done on purpose. Tonkatsu ramen (pork ramen) may be the trend’s superstar, but its ingredients, preparation, and practicality in the house appeared a little excessive. It takes total dedication and, in many cases, components that are difficult to come by for most readers.
As a result, shio ramen might be thought of as the Japanese counterpart of your grandmother’s chicken noodle soup. It’s incredibly easy to make, basic, and tasty.
1 entire chicken (broth) (minus the breast) sodium chloride (try using different varietals to enhance flavor such as Fleur de sel, Maldon, or Kosher) pepper (white)
Ramen is a kind of noodle. Eggs that are large (at room temperature) chicken breast that has been set aside scallions, thinly sliced
1. Cut a chicken into quarters
Begin by breaking down a whole chicken, ideally one weighing between 3-6 pounds – a large, plump chicken will always suffice. You don’t have to be an expert to accomplish this, but you should quarter the bird neatly. Remove the bone and skin from the breast, which will be saved and seared as a topping later.
Break the backbone (lower spine) from the cage, exposing the bone and marrow, which will help the broth become more gelatinous and fattiness. It’s what makes you lick your lips, indicating that the ramen is tasty. With the exception of the boneless, skinless breast, place the whole bird — fat, skin, bones, flesh, and everything — in a big heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven (or a pressure cooker if you have one – more on that below).
2. Prepare the Broth
We’ve finally arrived to the most crucial element of this meal! In a normal French broth, 1 part chicken to 4 parts water is used. To make ramen, change the proportions to 4 parts chicken to 1 part water. That’s exactly, you’re making a soup that’s quite concentrated. Fill the pot with just enough water to cover the chicken, then add another cup.
The trick to generating a clear ramen soup is to never bring it to a full boil. Instead, gently and gradually raise the temperature over medium-low heat, slightly covered. You only want the stock to faintly bubble for six or so hours (like grandma’s spaghetti sauce).
(You may make this recipe in a pressure cooker at its highest setting for speedier results.) Just cover the chicken with water instead of the additional cup. Cooking time is estimated to be 3 hours.)
It’s time to filter the broth once it’s cooked and brewed. You will, without a doubt, notice a lot of fat, which is a wonderful thing. Making such a soup, to be honest, really blew my mind. It’s simply the most concentrated, best-tasting chicken stock in the world in its unseasoned, strained condition.
We just season the broth with salt and white pepper for our shio ramen dish. I was surprised with how little salt was required (in comparison to a conventional chicken noodle soup). Sarah loves to use two kinds of salt: fleur de sel (which is brighter) and Maldon salt (earthier). Any sort would suffice, but if you want to add some variety, try experimenting with various varieties of salt and white pepper. If desired, you may flavor the broth by steeping some thinly sliced ginger in it while it cools.
Some ramen is called after the tare, which is a unique combination of very concentrated flavors. Consider ramen with miso (fermented bean paste) and shoyo (soy sauce). Every chef has something up their sleeve that genuinely individualizes each bowl of ramen. We’re not using tare in our ramen; instead, we’re using salt and pepper.
3) Boil an egg until it is soft.
These may be made ahead of time if required and serve as a convenient snack as well as a customary topping. Here’s how to consistently obtain excellent eggs:
a) Warm big eggs to room temperature.
c) Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil.
c) Crack eggs into a pot of boiling water and simmer for 8 minutes. Do not change the temperature.
d) Remove the eggs from the boiling water and shock them in an ice and water bath.
e) Peel eggs by cracking the bottom of the egg, pinching the pocket, and removing the peel with your thumb.
f) Slice the egg with a knife or, better yet, a taught fishing line.
4) Preheat the oven to 350°F and sear the chicken breasts.
As a topping, we’ll use chicken breasts. In a cast-iron pan, sear it with canola oil. Season the breasts well with salt and pepper (again, just with salt and pepper). Sarah loves to slice the breasts vertically to get as much flavor into the flesh as possible, which is an unconventional way. After a thorough sear on all sides, the breast may be put in a preheated oven to finish cooking.
5) Make the Noodles
Sarah loves Sun Noodles in her cooking, and you can probably find them at a supermarket near you. Dried spaghetti noodles may be used in a pinch (fresh pasta breaks down too soon), but real ramen noodles are always preferable. The texture of the noodles is crucial — after all, the dish is named for the noodle. Remember that ramen noodles, which do not contain eggs, must be kept refrigerated and have a significantly shorter shelf life than regular pasta.
The noodle and broth should complement each other perfectly; a reputable business will spend an inordinate amount of time harmonizing the broth to the noodle. So, if you do discover Sun Noodles, make sure you get the kind that’s associated with the broth/ramen you’re planning to cook.
Boil the noodles in a big pot of water, using a noodle basket to assist untangle the noodles first. As they cook, stir them with chopsticks from time to time. Cook according to the instructions on the package.
6) Put together the soup
As the noodles cook, pour scalding hot soup into a bowl. Strain the noodles and add them to the broth as soon as possible. To ensure that the noodles are equally covered, spread them out in the liquid. Assemble sliced chicken, a soft-boiled egg, and thinly sliced scallion as a garnish.
How to Eat Ramen Correctly
The meal should be served in a large, deep bowl. Instead than waiting for it to cool down, eat it while it’s still hot. To assist you pick up the noodles, you’ll need a large spoon and chopsticks with some traction. The spoon may be used to drink the soup, scoop up the eggs, or collect some noodles to grasp with your chopsticks.
Give the ramen a sniff, just like you would a fine glass of wine. Take a sip of the broth and relish it. Mmmm. Now climb in there and pick up some noodles from the bowl till they’re untangled, then lower yourself back down and suck away. The slurp is crucial because it cools the noodle while also bonding the liquid to the noodle. This explains why the Japanese eat this meal standing up in less than 10 minutes.
Keep in mind that because of the speed with which this meal should be delivered, it’s advisable to save it for a small group of your closest friends. To put it another way, don’t attempt to have a ten-person dinner party on your first try!
Oh, and a cold Sapporo or two goes well with this meal!
Oh, and a cold Sapporo or two goes well with this meal!
Matt Moore is the author of A Southern Gentleman’s Kitchen and a frequent contributor to the Art of Manliness.
Sarah Gavigan (@sarahgavigan) and Hannah Messinger (@hmmessinger) for their professional advise and recipe, and Hannah Messinger (@hmmessinger) for the photographs.
The “easy ramen recipe” is a way to make ramen at home. It’s easy and quick, and it tastes delicious.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you make ramen step by step?
A: First, you need to boil the water for your noodles. Then you will want to heat up some oil or butter in a pan on medium-low heat. If you are using vegetable oil try making sure it is at least 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the oil is heated turn off and pour it into another container with holes small enough not to let anything escape but still big enough that food can fit through them without being too crunchy. Next, take the vegetables out of boiling hot water and dump them into cold fresh tap water until theyre cool enough to touch without burning yourself (about 1 minute). After about 30 seconds transfer these vegetables back into pot containing your ramen broth so they dont get mushy while cooking all together. Lastly finish by adding any other desired ingredients like meat or fish
Is it hard to make ramen at home?
A: It is not hard to make ramen. You can find recipes online, or you could even try out the ones in this video here!
Is home made ramen healthy?
A: Home made ramen contains no preservatives, so it is safe to say that it is healthy.
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