Hello, friends, family, and potential strangers. I always want to tell everyone when food comes out really good, especially when it was unplanned and un-recipe-d. I started this blog so that I could stop texting pictures of my dinner to everyone. I’m hoping it will give you some good ideas and let you experience the deliciousness I come across. I’m sure I will also embark upon other, non-food-related musings.
Tonight, I made (slash kind of invented) a thrown-together ramen noodle soup for dinner, and it turned out really good! The boy brought home a nice chunk of grilled salmon from his restaurant side-job last night, and I wasn’t sure what to do with it at first. I had a few mushrooms left in the fridge, so I envisioned some sort of creamy mushroom salmon pasta at first, which sounds delicious actually, and I’ll definitely keep that idea for another night…but that seemed a little heavy for my mood tonight. As I stared blankly into my open cabinet, my eyes landed on a half-empty (half-full?) bag of ramen noodles and suddenly it all came together. Mushrooms, salmon, noodles…I always have homemade chicken broth in the freezer and a bunch of random asian condiments in the fridge…mix it all together and it would probably, possibly, turn into an amazing bowl of ramen.
And it did! Is it authentic? Not very. Is it delicious? Yes! Can you make it with just about any sort of vegetables and/or meat leftovers you have in your fridge? Yep.
Quick and Easy “Leftovers Ramen”
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 clove garlic
1 shoot green onion
A few mushrooms (or whatever leftover veggies you have)
~1.5 cups chicken broth (I freeze my broth in pint sized wide-mouth mason jars, which are about 1.5 cups at the freezer fill line)
1 nest ramen noodles (I use Lotus Foods brown rice and millet ramen noodles, which are amazing. They have that satisfying slurp and crinkly shape and don’t get mushy even if they sit in hot broth a while. And no, I’m not fancy enough to be an affiliate of anything, I just really like them.)
1 teaspoon low sodium tamari (or soy sauce)
2 teaspoons mirin
1 teaspoon white miso paste
1 piece cooked salmon (or whatever leftover meat you have)
1 egg (optional)
Pour a little sesame oil into a medium saucepan and heat on medium-low. Chop up the garlic and half the shoot of green onion (the white and a bit of the green), and sauté until fragrant. Slice up the mushrooms or whatever veggie you like and toss it in. Continue to sauté for a minute or two. Then turn up the heat to medium-high and add in the broth. I keep my broth frozen, so I run the jar upside down under hot water until the whole thing loosens, then I plop the frozen block of broth right into the pot and push the broth-ice around until it all melts down. Bring the broth to a simmer. Add the nest of ramen noodles, the soy sauce, the mirin, and the miso paste. Stir around and prod at the noodles to separate them a bit as they start to loosen. If you want to add an egg – and you should – carefully break it right at the surface so it slides gently into the broth. Cover the pot so the steam cooks the egg to your liking. I like the white cooked but my yolk still runny so it melts into the broth when I break it. Finally, slice up and toss in your cooked salmon (or whatever) and turn off the heat. The salmon will warm up from being in the soup. Chop up the rest of the green part of the green onion and sprinkle on top for prettiness. Transfer to a bowl, or if you’re like my crazy roommate, just eat it straight from the pot. Any questions?