Ramen usually gets its deep flavour from hours of cooking with bones, bonito flakes and kombu (seaweed). In this cheat’s version we’ve used pork rashers and stock, boosted with miso and fish sauce to achieve the rich familiar ramen flavour, with shiitake mushrooms adding a quick umami punch to the broth.
For a lighter version you can use pork tenderloin. And yes, we should doff our caps to David Chang, of Momofuku fame, who opened my eyes to the beauty of untraditional ramen bases like this.
- 750 g boneless pork rashers
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, plus extra to season (optional)
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce, plus extra to season (optional)
- 1 tablespoon red or white miso paste
- 100 ml sunflower or vegetable oil
- 1 bunch spring onions, white part thinly sliced, dark green part finely shredded
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 6 cm knob of ginger, peeled, half finely chopped, half finely shredded
- 1 litre chicken stock
- 100 g shiitake mushrooms
- 180 g ramen noodles
Remove and discard the rind and top layer of fat from the pork rashers. Cut the rashers into 2 cm pieces and place in a bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the soy sauce and 1 tablespoon of the fish sauce and toss to combine.
Combine the miso paste with the remaining soy sauce and fish sauce in a bowl.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan or flameproof casserole dish over medium heat. Add half the pork and cook, turning, for 8–10 minutes or until golden and crisp. Remove the pork from the pan, and repeat with the remaining pork. Add this pork to the first cooked batch.
Add the white part of the spring onion, garlic and finely chopped ginger to the pan and cook for 2–3 minutes or until aromatic. Add the miso mixture, stock, mushrooms, 750 ml (3 cups) water and three-quarters of the pork (reserve the rest to serve). Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook for 10–15 minutes, skimming off any fat that forms on the surface. Add the noodles and cook for a further 3–4 minutes or until tender.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a small saucepan over medium–high heat. Add the shredded ginger and cook for 1–2 minutes or until golden and crisp. Drain on a plate lined with paper towel.
Season the broth with extra soy sauce and fish sauce, if desired, then ladle into four serving bowls. Top with the reserved pork and garnish with the dark green part of the spring onion and crispy ginger.
TIP: Get ahead and make the broth to the point just before you add the noodles, then freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and reheat, then add the noodles and cook until tender.
SERVES: 4PREP: 15 MINSCOOKING: 40 MINS
Yummy Easy Quick Around the World by Matt Preston, published by Plum.