In our home we really like oriental food, maybe it has something to do with my husband living in Korea for two years or maybe just because it is packed full of flavour, spicy, comforting and not heavy.
Last year I started making this Ramen from Cooked with Clara, I have made loads of her recipes and loved her videos. Even my children will eat Ramen with a little moan and few leftover greens at the bottom of their bowls. Just make sure you add enough noodles and no chilies for the little ones.
You can add slivers of beef or chicken but I used Tofu. Can we just quickly talk about how cheap Tofu is if you buy it fresh from a traditional Chinese shop. I kid you not R3 per block and if you bring your own container (which I am happy to, doing my part for saving the planet) it is only R2. Now that is a bargain!! I buy all my essential oriental ingredients from a quaint little Chinese shop at the Carreira centre in Randburg.
You need quite a collection of oriental condiments to get going but once you have it in your pantry it will last for months. The essentials are; fish sauce, soy sauce, and sesame oil
If you want to delve deeper into Korean cooking there is amazing classes in Midrand hosted by Rany from Umami food studio. Learn how to make udon noodles, ramen, sushi, dumplings the whole works. I can’t wait to visit.
In the meantime, you can stock up on a whole range of Korean condiments from Che Gourmet like Kimchi and gochujang. Buy online or they are stocked at various supermarkets, health stores and at faithfull to nature.
I am so glad I got to use this bowl and plate set in a recipe, it was a wedding gift from a special friend and I still use it every time we eat Ramen.
- 1-liter good stock (beef, chicken or vegetable)
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 thick thumb ginger, peeled
- 2 chillis, chopped
- 1 lime, zest, and juice
- 2- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 5 drops sesame seed oil
- 3 tbsp fish sauce
- 3 spring onions, finely sliced
- red cabbage, bok choy, mushrooms, radishes, carrots, edamame beans (any veg you have on hand will do)
- 4 portions good quality egg noodles, cooked. I also like Udon noodles a lot.
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
- 2 raw beef fillets, cut into very, very thin strips (the hot stock will cook the meat) or you could just use tofu
- 1 handful coriander leaves, picked from the stems
- boiled eggs (about 5 minutes, for a soft center)
- Heat the stock in a pot
- In a pestle and mortar, bash together the garlic, ginger, lime zest and 1 chilli until well combined (if you don’t have a pestle and mortar, use a blender) Leave out chillis for children.
- Add the garlic mix to the stock, then add the soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame seed oil and lime juice. (Adjust the seasoning with more soy sauce and fish sauce if you like.)
- In 4 large bowls, neatly arrange the vegetables, noodles, tofu, spring onion, chilli, radish, carrots and sesame seeds. Make the effort and make it look nice, this is essential.
- Now gently ladle the stock onto the arranged ingredients, top off with a few coriander leaves and serve immediately.
- Add the boiled egg and extra sesame seeds last.
- When you’re not feeling well this dish will warm you and give you strength.
Photograph by Melanie Wessels