Cold ramen?

Hiyashi chukaSo…I just realized that I leave for Korea in a mere 3 weeks time! Holy crap. No wonder shit’s been hitting the fan lately. I’ve been experiencing an influx of cupcake orders, sponsorship requests, working 6-day work weeks for the past three weeks — all while to try and maintain a healthy, balanced lifestyle in preparation for the Vancouver Sun Run. Which was today. Again, no training — just winged it. Now my muscles are all achy and sore, yay. BUT atleast I managed to beat my 2011 time and finished the race at 56:27! Hurrah!

Now, time for noodles, more specifically, hiyashi chuka.

Hiyashi chuka is a Japanese ramen noodle dish that is served cold. Cold? COLD RAMEN?! Why…!? No, seriously. It is VERY refreshing, especially in the hot summer months — a great switch up from the hot ramen broths typically offered.

The first time I had cold ramen was at Santouka. It was the summertime and I noticed that they were offering hiyashi chuka and that it was available for a limited time. I had to have it — and was so glad I did. While everybody was dying from their hot and heavy broths, I was actually refreshed from my dish. Cold ramen noodles, tomatoes, chiffonade eggs, cucumber, and imitation crab meat were dressed in a tangy rice vinegar and sesame oil-based sauce. So good.

What’s best about hiyashi chuka is that you can really use anything as a topping. I bulked mine up with green salad on the bottom and added carrots, cucumber, egg, and green onions because I had that on hand. Feel free to add some sliced ham in there, enoki mushrooms, ikura, or Japanese hot mustard to spice it up.

Here’s my version of hiyashi chuka!
Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka Hiyashi chuka
Hiyashi chuka (dressing adapted from NoobCook)

What you’ll need:
- 1 pkg fresh ramen noodles
Toppings
- 1 free range egg, beaten
- 1/2 cucumber, seeds removed, julienned
- 2 small carrots, peeled and julienned
- 2 roma tomatoes, sliced into wedges
- 1/2 cup kamaboko (imitation crab meat), julienned or roughly chopped
- Organic mixed green salad (optional)
- Sesame seeds (optional)
- Green onions, sliced (optional)
Dressing
- 3 1/2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 3 tsps granulated sugar

What you’ll need to do:
1. In a pot of boiling water, cook your ramen noodles according to packaged directions. Drain, rinse in cold water, and set aside. Make sure the noodles do not stick together.
2. In a small saucepan, cook your egg over medium heat and swirl around the pan to make a thin egg “crepe”. Flip and turn off the heat. Remove from heat and let cool. Once cool, roll your cooked egg crepe and slice into thin threads. Set aside.
3. Make your dressing. Whisk all the ingredients for the dressing together until all of the sugar is dissolved. Adjust to taste.
4. Time to assemble your bowls! Place a handful (or however much) green salad at the bottom of a bowl. Place your chilled ramen noodles on top and carefully add your toppings (carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, kamaboko, sesame seeds, egg, etc). Add your dressing and you’re done!
5. Sprinkle with sesame seeds on top. Serve as is or with a side of miso soup. Makes 4 servings.

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