I wanted to make this today and spent hours recipe searching through Japanese cookbooks and google, to no real avail.
So here's what I created. Plse keep in mind that there are some sacrosanct Japanese rules I have broken (Oh Noooo Mr. Bill, no kombu in your dashi???!!!) However, I was really pleased w/ the robustly flavored results. Hope some of you might enjoy this.
BEEF UDON SOUP SERVES 2-4
This combination is my favorite but nothing in this recipe is sacrosanct
Substitute amounts or types of vegetables, protein, broth.
2 1/2 C. BONITO FLAKES
(KOMBU IS GREAT ADDITION BUT I DIDN’T USE IT)
6 C. WATER
1 C. SHIITAKE BROTH (OR MORE DASHI OR BEEF OR CHICKEN BROTH)
4-6 T. TAMARI OR JAPANESE SOY SAUCE
1-3 T. MIRIN
1 – 2 TSP. KOSHER SALT
1 PKG 9 OU. FRESH UDON, CUT IN HALF( Nasoya “Japanese Style Noodles” are available here)
½ LB SHAVED BEEF, FROZEN AND SLIVERED (I get it at Trader Joe’s)
1 MEDIUM ZUCCHINI, sliced in thin half rounds
1 CARROT, MEDIUM, sliced in thin half rounds
½ C.- 1 C. SAUTEED SHIITAKES ( made from 4-8 ou. Raw sliced shiitake caps)*
½ LB SOFT TOFU, IN ½ INCH CUBES
1 C. SNOW PEAS, SLIVERED ON DIAGONAL
3 SCALLIONS, THINLY SLICED IN ROUNDS
TOASTED SESAME SEEDS OR JAPANESE FURIKAKE COMBO OF SESAME SEED/SLIVERED NORI
BOIL WATER. ADD BONITO FLAKES AND PUSH DOWN INTO THE WATER.
TURN OFF HEAT.. WHEN BONITO HAS SUNK TO BOTTOM OF POT,
BRING BACK TO BOIL, TURN DOWN TO SIMMER 1O-15 MIN. STRAIN, PUSHING ON SOLIDS.
(I YIELDED 3 C. DASHI FROM 5 C. WATER)
Give bonito flakes to kitties and reserve dashi in pot.
MEANWHILE, IN POT OF SALTED WATER, BOIL UDON TO AL DENTE- c. 3 MIN., REMOVE AND DRAIN UNDER COLD WATER. RESERVE.
BLANCH AND RESERVE SEPARATELY: CARROTS, SNOW PEAS.
( YOU CAN SKIP THE NORMAL COLD WATER SHOCK)
COMBINE DASHI AND SHIIT. BROTH,BRING TO BOIL,TURN DOWN HEAT AND ADD
TAMARI/ SOY, AND MIRIN AND SALT. ADD MORE IF NEEDED. RETURN TO LOW BOIL.
ADD SHIITAKES AND BEEF AND ZUCCHINI AND COOK FEW MINUTES TIL ZUCCHINI IS ALMOST DONE. ADD CARROTS, SCALLIONS, TOFU, STIR TIL VERY HOT. ADD UDON TIL VERY HOT.
ADD MORE WATER, DASHI OR STOCK IF NEEDED(Add soy/mirin mixture if you add liquid)
PUT SNOW PEAS IN BOWLS, TOP WITH UDON MIXTURE.
SPRINKLE WITH SESAME SEED/MIXTURE.
I find this easiest to eat with chopsticks and a deep flat bottomed white Chinese spoon.
REMEMBER: IN JAPAN, SLURPING IS A SIGN OF A HAPPY EATER!
* SHIITAKE BROTH:
BOIL I LB.SHIITAKE STEMS IN 6-8 C. WATER, TURN DOWN AND SIMMER,
PARTIALLY COVERED, 1- 2 HOURS, REPLACING WATER TO KEEP ORIGINAL LEVEL.
STRAIN BROTH,PUSHING DOWN ON SOLIDS. COOK THIS DOWN TO INTENSIFY FLAVOR.
WHENEVER I COOK SHIITAKES, I MAKE THIS BROTH AND KEEP IT IN FREEZER FOR SAUCES, SOUPS, THIS DISH. LIKE A DEMIGLACE, YOU CAN COOK IT DOWN SIGNIFICANTLY SO IT TAKES UP LESS FREEZER SPACE.