Originally come from China, the Japanese have taken ramen to their hearts with an endless number of variations and regional flavours. Ramen can take time to prepare, especially if you want to make a good soup, but at Japan Centre we like to make your life easier, so check out our recipe using ready-made fresh soy sauce and miso ramen. A beginner recipe but particularly tasty when you add plenty of authentic Japanese toppings!
First begin by preparing your chosen toppings. You can fry the shiitake mushrooms and bamboo shoots with a little soy sauce to give them a richer flavour. Although naruto fishcakes don’t have much flavour on their own, the pink spiral definitely adds a touch of colour to your ramen noodle soup so slice up a few pieces of it. You can also choose to include lots of spring onion and nori seaweed to make a 100% vegan ramen called negi ramen.
You may wonder which is the best flavour for your ramen soup, soy sauce or miso. Soy sauce broth has a light and salty flavour and miso broth is a rich flavoured choice that originates from Hokkaido. Miso soup tends to be a bit thicker with a strong, salty taste.
The preparation of your ramen is very easy, simply boil water in a large saucepan, then add the noodles and let them cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
While your ramen are cooking, dilute the sauce with hot water in a bowl. The amount of water you use is up to you depending on how strong you want your soup to taste. Start by adding approximately 250ml of water to the soup base and add a little water until you get just the right taste for you.
Lastly, add your noodles and soup to a bowl, then your prepared toppings. Like many types of Japanese cuisine, presentation is key to a perfect bowl of ramen. As Japanese people say, a lot of the feelings of hunger come from your eyes, not your stomach! :)
There are many different styles and regional recipes for ramen including:
• Tonkotsu ramen is very popular with its white and cloudy soup made from pork bones to give a rich taste. Tonkotsu is the specialty of the city of Hakata located on the island of Kyushu in the south of Japan.
• Sapporo ramen uses a miso broth for its ramen along with stir-fried beansprouts, slices of pork, butter and sweetcorn. A rich meal to keep you warm through the cold Hokkaido winter.
• Tokyo ramen is soy sauce based with a bit of dashi which is usually used to make udon or soba soup stock.
• Yokohama ramen is made of a broth similar to tonkotsu.