June 1, 2015

Lazyass Cookin’: Cold Sanuki Udon with Nameko Mushrooms

by Kayoko

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Many of you are well aware of my noodle addiction. I like all noodles: soba, udon, ramen, linguine, naengmyun, pho, any and all of it. Fried, boiled, in broth. Cold soba is probably the only food that I crave all of the time — and it is always the first thing I eat after being away from my kitchen for a while.

But the sanuki udon we had in Osaka inspired me to make this dish. Cold, al dente noodles garnished with green onions, grated ginger, and nameko mushrooms out of a can. If you don’t like slime, the nameko are not for you. But they certainly add a nice bit of flavor and texture to this dish.

Sanuki udon is from the Shigoku prefecture of Japan, and are famous for its smooth, silky sheen and bouncy texture. They are excellent when served icy cold.

INGREDIENTS
1 bunch Sanuki udon*
Can of nameko mushrooms*
0.5 cup tsuyu soup base*

1 stalk green onions
1 small stub raw ginger

*Ingredients can be found in an Asian grocery store, ideally a Japanese one.

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To be sure you have Sanuki udon, make sure to read the label on the back. Also, if there is an option, get the zaru udon variation, which is udon that is meant to be consumed cold.

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METHOD

1. Boil water.

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2. Once water boils, add the noodles for the designated time it states on the package. This was 7 minutes:

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3. Slice green onions.

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4. Grate ginger.

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5. Prepare an ice bath for the noodles:

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6. Prepare the soup base. You can make your own, or be lazy and just get a bottle of it at the Asian market.

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Some of them will require you to just use it straight out of the bottle. Others will ask that you add water, like this one.

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7. When the noodles are ready, strain them and splash some cold water over them:

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Then dunk into the ice bath:

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8. Strain the noodles after a few minutes and plate. Make sure the noodles are firm and very cold.

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Look at how shiny the noodles are!

9. Garnish the noodles with ginger and green onions and spoon over some of that slimy nameko:

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10. Pour over the tsuyu into the dish:

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Enjoy immediately.

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With summer coming up, this is the perfect lazy dish for when you don’t feel like cooking and you need to cool down asap. It’s also a simple way to rest your stomach if you’ve been eating and drinking too much (like me!).

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