OODLES OF NOO­DLES

WON­DER­FUL JA­PANESE FLAVOURS OF­FER A TASTE SEN­SA­TION TO THIS CHICKEN AND TOFU SOUP

The Northern Star - - WEEKEND - WORDS: JO-ANNE WOOD­MAN PHOTO: AL RICHARD­SON

Savour every spoon­ful of this miso-in­fused Ja­panese chicken noo­dle soup with tofu crou­tons.

JA­PANESE CHICKEN NOO­DLE SOUP WITH TOFU CROU­TONS Serves 4 IN­GRE­DI­ENTS

1L (4 cups) chicken liq­uid stock 5-6cm piece fresh ginger, peeled, cut into match­sticks

4 green shal­lots, cut di­ag­o­nally into 2cm slices

2 (about 500g) chicken breasts

1⁄2 nori sheet, crum­bled

125ml (1⁄2 cup) boil­ing wa­ter

250g firm tofu, cut into 1.25cm cubes

2 tsp sesame oil, plus a few drops, ex­tra 2 tsp soy sauce

180g soba noo­dles

115g (1⁄3 cup) white miso paste

125ml (1⁄2 cup) warm wa­ter

1 bunch gai lan, leaves cut into 4cm pieces, stems sep­a­rated

200g swiss brown mush­rooms, sliced

1 long fresh red chilli, thinly sliced Sesame seeds, toasted, to serve

Lime wedges, to serve

METHOD

Pre­heat oven to 200C/180C fan forced. Line a bak­ing tray with bak­ing pa­per.

Place stock, ginger and half the shal­lot in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to the boil. Re­duce heat to low. Add chicken and poach for 15 min­utes or un­til just cooked through. Trans­fer chicken to a clean board. Set aside for 5 min­utes, to rest. Thinly slice chicken di­ag­o­nally.

Mean­while, place nori in a heat­proof bowl. Pour over the boil­ing wa­ter and set aside to de­velop the flavours.

Place the tofu, sesame oil and soy sauce in a bowl and gen­tly toss to com­bine. Spread over the pre­pared tray and roast for 10-12 min­utes or un­til golden.

Cook noo­dles in a saucepan of boil­ing wa­ter for 3 min­utes or un­til just ten­der. Drain. Re­fresh un­der cold run­ning wa­ter. Driz­zle with ex­tra oil, to stop stick­ing. Di­vide among bowls.

Com­bine miso and warm wa­ter in a jug. Stir to dis­solve. Drain nori, re­serv­ing liq­uid. Dis­card nori. Add re­served liq­uid to soup.

Bring soup to a gen­tle sim­mer over low heat. Add gai lan stems and mush­room. Sim­mer for 2 min­utes or un­til just ten­der. Add gai lan leaves and miso mix­ture. Cook, stir­ring, for 1 minute or un­til just wilted (do not boil). Re­move from heat. Stir in chicken un­til just warmed through.

La­dle among bowls. Top with tofu, chilli and re­main­ing shal­lot. Sprin­kle with sesame seeds and serve with lime wedges.

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