Kimchi Ramen

DSC01054I still remember the first time I tried ramen. I was maybe 10 years old and at a friend’s house. My friend whipped out a Maruchen Ramen packet with crunchy, dried noodles and a small envelope of flavor seasoning (in this case, chicken). We threw it all in a pot of boiling water—and ta-da, within minutes lunch was served. It was delicious, and rather exotic for my young palate. I was hooked. Later in life, I realized that packaged ramen is probably not the best staple of a nutritional diet.

I never considered making my own ramen until I was inspired by a recipe I found online. Although it took longer and required real ingredients (imagine that), it was an enjoyable process to slowly simmer the broth and watch it come alive with flavor. The kimchi provides interesting texture contrast and a welcome punch of heat, though I think kimchi selection is important—of the two I’ve tried, I prefer Wildbrine to King’s. I’ve made this ramen twice, topping hot bowls of soup the first time with sauteed shrimp, and the second time with a poached egg. Both are great, but I prefer the shrimp. What a world of difference from my humble ramen beginnings.

Kimchi Ramen (slightly adapted from Happy Yolks; makes 2 heaping bowls)

2 cups ramen or soba noodles
1/2 cup sliced green onion
1/2 pound peeled shrimp

for the broth:
4 cups water
1 onion
1/2 apple, sliced
3 lemon slices
1/4 cup sliced shallots
5 garlic cloves
1″ piece ginger
1/2 cup kimchi
3 tbsp miso paste

For the broth, mix together all ingredients (except for the miso) and simmer for 30 minutes. Mix in miso after 30 minutes and remove from heat. While the broth simmers, cook the noodles, slice the green onions, and cook the shrimp (I sauteed over medium-high heat for 4 minutes).

For each bowl, combine noodles, 1/2 cup of kimchi, green onions, shrimp, and top with 1 cup of broth.DSC01043

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