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Recipe for :

Green-tea and Buckwheat Noodles
 

This is one of the recipes from Mrs Susie. If you want to find out more about her have a look at her biography page which she has written. Mrs Susie specialises in Oriental cooking. An important first step in Oriental cooking (which I think is important) is at the end of each recipe.

"A variation of soba (buckwheat flour noodles), powdered green tea is mixed into the noodle dough. The subtle flavor of green tea highlights this version of zaru soba or chilled buckwheat noodles (see previous recipe) served in a bamboo box".

Ingredients

For Dashi:
One 6-inch piece of kombu seaweed
1 1/2 quarts water
1 1/2 cups loosely packed dried bonito flakes

For Dipping Sauce:
2 1/2 cups dashi
1/2 cup soy sauce
4 tablespoons mirin
1 teaspoon sugar
3 cups loosely packed bonito flakes
12 ounces dried green tea soba
1/4 cup fine shredded toasted nori

Condiments:
2 tablespoons wasabi powder mixed with 1 1/2 tablespoons water to form a thick paste, cover, and let stand for 10 minutes
6 tablespoon finely grated daikon
6 tablespoons finely chopped green onions, rinsed in cold water and gently squeezed

Method

To make Dashi:
With a damp cloth, wipe the kombu. Put it in a saucepan with 1 1/2 quarts water. Over medium heat, slowly bring just under a boil. Remove the kombu and return the water to a boil. Add the bonito flakes and do not stir. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and let the flakes settle to the bottom of the pan. Strain the stock (dashi) into a saucepan. Makes 6 cups.

To make dipping sauce:
In a medium saucepan, combine the dashi, soy sauce, mirin, and sugar. Bring just to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the bonito flakes, do not stir, and remove from the heat. Let it sit and settle to the bottom of the pan for 10 minutes; drain the dipping sauce into a container and chill. Refrigerate in a covered container up to 2 weeks.

To cook Soba:
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles, stir and until it comes to a second boil. Reduce to medium-high heat and continue boiling for 5 - 8 minutes or until tender but firm to the bite. Drain in a colander. Rinse thoroughly with cold water. Drain. Divide the noodles among the 6 baskets or put into shallow soup bowls.

To serve:
Sprinkle the nori shreds over the noodles. Pour about 1/2 cup of the dipping sauce equally among six small bowls. In small condiment dishes, arrange equal amounts of wasabi, daikon, and green onions.

To eat:
With chopsticks each diner mixes a dab of wasabi with the green onions or daikon, and smears them on the noodles. Take that portion of noodles and dip into the dipping sauce. Lift to the mouth and eat.

Ingredient tip:
Wasabi paste comes in a plastic squeeze tube. Once opened, refrigerate. Nori shreds come packaged or use a toasted nori sheet and with scissors, cut the sheet crosswise in half, then crosswise into 1/8-inch wide strips

Serves 6

Enjoy!
Mrs Susie

"I have studied oriental cooking quite a bit and the one thing that makes it different from other styles of cooking is: it is 90% preparation and 10% cooking. It is very important to have everything in the recipe already prepared for cooking before you start cooking.

I take a plate and cut up my ingredients as called for in the recipe and place them on different parts of the plate. Only then do I think about cooking. I will put my oil in the pan and, as the things are called for in the recipe, I will sweep them into whatever pan I am cooking with, cook for as long as called for, then add the next ingredient.

Oriental cooking happens so fast. To stop and cut up the garlic (for example) if I had the ginger cooking in the pan would result in burnt ginger before the garlic is finished.

When I am cooking a ten or fifteen course dinner you should see my kitchen. I have plates all over and all my sauces mixed in bowls and everything is ready to cook before I start cooking. This is the right way to do it and necessary to have a well-timed dinner.

Another thing, get yourself a good cleaver that will not rust. You will be surprised how much you will use this for all your cooking, not just oriental cooking. Do yourself a favor and get a good one. I think I paid $20 for mine but again that was 20 years ago".

 
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