The ramen starts with a mushroom dashi, or base broth. Whenever I go to Chinatown I buy huge bags of dried shiitakes for my ramen and they last me for months. If you live anywhere near an Asian market, or in a city with a Chinatown neighborhood, I highly suggest taking a trip there to source your ingredients. I buy produce, soy sauce, vinegars, dried goods, and fresh noodles every time I make it to Chinatown in NYC.
Also matcha flavored Kit Kats. Yeah, you heard me.
Cook time: 30 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
Basic Dashi (enough for two people)
8 dried shiitake mushrooms
4 scallions, left whole
2x2 inch square of kombu
5 cups water
1 tbsp light soy sauce
Optional broth add-ins (I use all of these)
1 tbsp mushroom seasoning
1 tsp ssamjang
1 tsp Chinese dried marinated mustard greens
2 tsp sambal chili sauce
Noodles and Garnishes (I use all of these)
1 pack of your favorite ramen or udon noodles
1 scallion, sliced thinly
1 pinch gochugaru, or Korean chili flakes
1 pinch black sesame seeds
Toasted nori seaweed
Sautéed, sliced shiitake mushrooms (sauté on high heat with canola oil and a tiny bit of soy sauce until crispy)
A few drops sesame or chili oil
Step 1: Rinse your kombu in warm water and add it to a large pot with all of the other basic dashi ingredients and any add-ins you choose
Step 2. Bring broth to a boil and reduce to a simmer
Step 3. Let the broth simmer for about 30 minutes, removing and discarding the kombu after 15 minutes
Step 4. While the broth is simmering, slice your scallions and gather any other garnishes or toppings you decide to use
Step 5. Cook your noodles according to the package instructions while the broth is simmering, timing it so that your noodles will finish at the same time the broth is done simmering
Step 6. While the noodles finish cooking, ladle a few spoonfuls of the simmering broth over a small mesh strainer directly into your serving bowls until you have about two cups of broth per bowl.
Step 7. Add the noodles to your serving bowls and top with your favorite garnishes and veggies.