It was a dark and stormy night…
…when we sat down to eat
The rain fell in torrents. Streams of water blew under the awning and into the back door. The sky was green and black. Lightning flashed, thunder roared. Tree tops turned violent circles as wind tested the flexibility of trunks. We two remembered romantic times when we’d been foolish enough to go out into such a storm to catch the excitement, to make it our own… Wet clothes, hair blowing, wet skin, on skin…
The sun wouldn’t set until 9:15, but we turned the lights on. To eat.
This is the best of the ramen recipes, so far, in my cooking project! If you try it, don’t get so excited that you forget the shiso and onion garnishes on top!
Ramen with Pork-and-Miso Sauce
The Pork-and-Miso Sauce:
You can make this sauce ahead of time. It will keep in the refrigerator in a jar with a tight-fitting lid for a week, or it can be frozen. I doubled the sauce recipe because it’s great to have a delicious home-made meal quickly ready to eat.
- 6 to 8 ounces pork shoulder
- 1 Tablespoon sake
Chop the pork to a fine dice with a heavy knife; you can also use a food processor. If you partially freeze the pork, it’s easier to chop. You can also use ground pork, but it won’t have as much texture and you have no control over how much fat is added.
Add the sake to the meat in a bowl. Toss/stir to loosen the mixture. Cover and refrigerate.
- 3 Tablespoons mamemiso (soybean miso)
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons akamiso (brown miso)
- 2 Tablespoons sake
- 1 Tablespoon sugar (original recipe calls for 2 Tbs.)
In another bowl, combine the above ingredients and stir until smooth.
Cooking the Sauce:
- 2 Tablespoons oil
- 3 green onions, or 1 negi, white part only, minced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon toban jiang (chile-bean sauce)
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- 5 shiso leaves, minced
- a few drops of tamari
Heat a skillet, and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the minced long onion (scallions) and garlic. Cook over low heat fro 20 seconds. Add the toban jiang and cook for 10 seconds. Add the pork, and cook until it’s pale and crumbled. Add the miso mixture and cook over medium to low heat for 3 minutes. Turn the heat off and add the ginger, shiso, and tamari.
- 4 cups ramen stock, heated
- 13 ounces dried chukasoba noodles, boiled
- 3 green onions, cut into “brushes”
- 5 shiso leaves, julienned
As soon as the noodles are drained, divide them among 4 bowls. Pour 1 cup of ramen broth over the noodles. Top each serving with 3 Tablespoons of the pork-miso sauce. Garnish with the onions and shiso.