Now today's recipe is for the true foodie. It might sound, at first, like an odd concoction of ingredients but a) it's a Korean speciality (in fact it's super popular, in all it's forms), b) it's uber healthy and c) it's totally delicious. You can add all sorts of ingredients (traditionally Korean beef, asian pear etc) but this is my tasty veggie version. You may lean towards my hearty Bourguignon for a cuddly dinner date, or some Chilli Chicken wraps but this one's best enjoyed cosied up on your own, or with friends, for maximum slurp-a-bility.
For two greedy diners, you will need:
200g soba (buckwheat) noodles (check on the packet that they're 100% buckwheat)
1 large egg
3-4 pieces dried kelp/wakame (pop down to your asian supermarket or get it online)
5 tbsps soy sauce
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
A hefty pinch of Korean chilli powder
Roasted seaweed sheets (optional)
First up, we need to make the broth. Wash your dried seaweed and pop them into a saucepan along with a litre of water from the kettle. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Take off the heat and pop the pan into a sink of cold water, you need to cool the stock right down. (Obviously don't let any sink water get into the broth!) Decant into a bowl once cooled and pop into the fridge to chill.
Boil your egg for 8 minutes until the yolk is gorgeous and gooey. Cut in half.
Chop the cucumber into slices then julienne.
Back to the broth. Time to add some flavour, in the form of your soy, vinegar and sugar.
Time to cook your noodles. Pure soba noodles are made from 100% buckwheat (a seed related to rhubarb and sorrel not a cereal grain) flour and are coarse and brittle in their dry form. Cooking them brings out their deliciously chewy texture, they taste nutty and almost fatty like a good tonkotsu ramen. Follow the cooking instructions but make sure you taste near the end, they need to be nice, chewy and al dente. Run them immediately under the cold tap to stop cooking and maintain the texture.
Now to assemble. Curl your noodles round into a bowl, then pour in the chilled broth and top with a pile of the cucumber. Sprinkle on a good pinch of chilli, the sesame seeds, crush the roasted seaweed and throw the crumbles on and finally, your egg half.
Buckwheat is still fairly carb-y but they're full of good things too (minerals like manganese and copper, fibre and protein) and are far less bloat-inducing than wheat noodles. I like to spiralize my cucumber sometimes to turn them noodle-y too (I like this one).
Tuck in and enjoy!
Check out my other Korean recipes