Tampopo Special Ramen Recipe
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- ~2 pounds of pork bones (I used neck and leg bones, pre-cut by a butcher)
- ~2 pounds chicken or duck wings, each bone sawed in 2 or so pieces
- 3 Japanese long onions, a bunch of spring onions or a leek or 2, roughly chopped
- Half a head of garlic, each clove cut in half
- 1 Knob ginger, cut in 2-3 pieces
- Enough water to cover all ingredients with a generous clearance
- ~3 pounds pork shoulder
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup sake
- 1/2 cup mirin
- 1 knob ginger, finely sliced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 bunch green onion, chopped
- Negi (Japanese onion), sliced diagonally
- Menma (available at Asian markets)
- Chuka soba (Chinese-style noodles)
- Sesame oil
- Soy sauce
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How to make Tampopo Special Ramen
This is ramen inspired by the fantastic movie Tampopo (タンポポ）, a classic of both food and Japanese cinema.
I made it for my family in recognition of my big move to Japan next month. Here is a clip from the film which I think you might enjoy.
Place bones in a pot of water, bring to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes. Drain and discard the water before rinsing bones under a cold tap.
Combine bones with other ingredients and bring to a light simmer (never a boil, or the soup with cloud), keeping going, uncovered, for about seven hours. You will probably need to add a little water to keep your 1-2 inch buffer of water above the bones and other ingredients. Once it's done, strain it as much as possible, and either use it, keep it on the low fire for a day of running your ramen shop, or cool and refrigerate or freeze it.
Brown the pork all over before simmering it over medium-low heat in a mixture of all the other ingredients for 1.5 hours. Let it cool. For classic ramen chasu, all you have to do is let it cool a bit and thinly slice it (about 4mm). The braising liquid is great reserved.
Boil some water.
Heat bowls and put a few tablespoons of soy sauce (and a dash of the pork braising liquid if you have it) in the bottom of them.
Dice the pork (I use thicker than usual slices for this) and quickly stir-fry it with the sliced negi).
Meanwhile put the noodles into the boiling water for about 2 minutes and drain.
Ladle the broth into the bowls, followed by noodles and the negi/pork mixture. Add menma on the side and finish off with a drop of sesame oil over the pork. Done.
Tampopo Special Ramen. Lacking neither substance nor profundity.
For more classic shoyu ramen, combine the soy in the bowls with broth, add noodles, serve with a strip of nori, thinly sliced pork, negi, menma and any other toppings you desire.