Friday, September 13, 2013

Hiyashi Chuka

Hiyashi Chuka (Cold Ramen Noodles) Recipe  冷やし中華

Hiyashi Chuka Sauce (recipe below)
Fresh Ramen noodles, prepared
Your choice of salad toppings

1.  Place noodles on a plate
2.  Arrange egg, cucumber and other things on top
3.  Pour Hiyashi Chuka Sauce over it all.

Hiyashi Chuka Sauce/Ta-re Ingredients serves 4:
100 ml Japanese soy sauce
120 ml Vinegar (Rice vinegar is best but apple cider or white will do)
120 ml Cold water
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp sesame oil

1.  Place all sauce ingredients into a small jar and shake to combine and dissolve sugar.

Your choice of salad toppings:
Egg  (see below for preparation)
Cooked Chicken  (I used leftover teriyaki chicken from last night)
Bean sprouts (moyashi)
Ham (or Chinese barbecued pork, if you have it)
Cooked Prawns, Kamaboko (or seafood extender)
Pickled ginger (beni-shoga)

 To prepare egg:  Crack one egg into a bowl, add a small pinch of salt and sugar and beat lightly.  Pour into a pre-heated, oiled frypan.  After it looks firm enough, carefully flip and turn off heat, allow to cook a few seconds, then tip onto a plate.  Wait till cool before slicing.  Cook one egg for each person.

Fresh Ramen Noodles are thin wheat noodles which have a light dusting of flour.
To prepare fresh ramen noodles for Hiyashi Chuka:  Place noodles in rapidly boiling water and boil noodles until done.  Tip into a colander, fill the saucepan with cold water, return noodles to saucepan, tip out into colander again, fill saucepan with cold water again... do this 3 times to rinse and chill the noodles.

Delightfully refreshing hiyashi chuka noodles are our favorite this summer.  
There are a few other kinds of cold noodle dishes in Japan.  
I grew up enjoying cold somen noodles in summer, which my mother often made,
and we also enjoy cold soba noodles,
and now I'm in Japan with an abundant affordable supply of fresh ramen noodles, I can't stop...
this dish always leaves me wanting more... ^_^ 

While somen and soba are purely Japanese dishes, Hiyashi Chuka is actually a Japanese adaptation of a chinese-style dish.  "Hiyashi" means "Chilled" and "Chu-ka" means "Chinese"

If you can't get fresh ramen noodles, try another kind of fresh chinese noodles with an elastic texture which are made for soup.
I just love the 食感 (texture) of fresh ramen noodles...

 Ochibi loves it too...

Friday, September 6, 2013

Pork Ginger Stir-Fry

Pork Ginger Stir-Fry     豚生姜炒め (Buta Shouga Itame)   
serves 2-3

300g thinly sliced pork
1 piece of fresh ginger
1 carrot
1 onion
1 eggplant
3 piiman (or 1 green capsicum/bell pepper)

3 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp sake
2 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch or katakuriko, dissolved in about 100ml water.
vegetable oil
a little sesame oil

1.  Heat about 2 Tbsp oil in a wok or frypan.  Grill the sliced onion, eggplant and bell pepper until the onion is fragrant and the eggplant and bell pepper have a slight grilled look.  Remove and set aside.  Rinse the wok with a little water.
2.  Heat another 2 Tbsp oil in the wok.  Add the pork and turn it just enough to allow the pork to have golden-brown marks.  Add the ginger and carrots, sake, soy sauce and sugar, and cover with a lid until carrots have softened.
3.  Add the grilled vegetables, sesame oil and cornstarch mixture.  Heat, stirring, until the sauce thickens.

 I love buying my fruit and vegetables at the local old style produce markets in Japan.  Aside from the better prices, the selection and quality is excellent.  I was captivated by the aroma and colour of this fresh ginger and determined that it would become the special ingredient in my next dish.

I love the flavour of grilled eggplant and piiman, 
so decided to put all these flavours together.

And came up with this Pork Ginger Stir-Fry.

enjoy ^_^

 How I prepare the Vegetables:
Ginger: matchsticks
Carrot: slice thinly diagonally and then lengthwise in thirds
Piiman: slice lenthwise
Eggplant: quarter lengthwise, then slice into 1 inch pieces
Onion: slice thinly lengthwise's been a while, hasn't it...
Thanks for your patience ^_^  Im back home now so will try to find time for posting more cooking!