How To: Build Your Bowl of Ramen

14 June 2021

You might think of ramen as a time-consuming process. Understandably, many of us don’t have a chance to put together a 10-hour traditional tonkotsu broth every week. But ramen can be the filling, healthy and quickish dish that you can put on the table for dinner. Made with a healthy seasoned broth base, with our spice blend, Oishii Instant Ramen Blend, you can confidently add ramen to your meal plan any day of the week.

Consider Oishii Instant Ramen Blend a reinvention: a healthy, no-nasties and tasty spice blend used to create ramen at home. It’s as simple as swapping out your instant seasoning packet for two teaspoons of Oishii Instant Ramen Blend. Or, you can use it to build out the flavour base to your ramen broth. After that, it’s over to you to build a wholesome bowl out of your favourite noodles, toppings, proteins, and condiments.

You’ll need the essentials of ramen handy to make this dish: the stock, our Oishii Instant Ramen Blend, ramen noodles, a choice of protein (meat or tofu) and a host of toppings. It’s simpler than it looks: follow the steps below as we walk you through it.

Start with Quick Ramen Broth

At the heart of this meal is the ramen broth – focus on getting this part right and you’ll have a fantastic foundation for a quick bowl of ramen that you can put together at a moment’s notice. There are three fundamental flavours to a ramen dish – shio, shoyu and miso which (respectively) use a base of salt, soy sauce or miso. Miso is a Japanese fermented paste made from a cultured mixture of rice, salt, soybeans and koji (a mold that crucial to the production of miso). It’s frequently used to add that umami flavour to Japanese meals.

The miso taste is heavy, complex and bold and this flavour profile helps carry its equally heavy toppings like chashu pork belly or sweet miso buttered corn. Miso ramen is usually a mixture of chicken stock with traditional Japanese condiments: soy sauce, mirin, miso and even chilli paste depending on the heat level you. When combined with chicken stock, Oishii Instant Ramen Blend uses the flavours of biodynamic miso (containing white rice, chickpeas, salt, and koji) to give the ramen broth its rich flavour and texture. Use the recipe for Quick Ramen Broth to make your broth.

Combine Oishii Instant Ramen Blend with chicken stock (or stock of your choice), season it with salt, soy sauce, mirin and sesame oil, and you’ll create a yummy – or as they say in Japan, oishii – base.

Add your noodles

Ramen noodles can be as versatile as a ramen broth. They’re an essential part of the heavy slurping culture you’ll hear at a ramen café. Noodles may be wavy or straight, but the flavour and liquid of the ramen broth will cling to them so that the slurp sound you make is inevitable.

Miso-based ramen soups are traditionally enjoyed with wavy, thick and chewy noodles. Fresh noodles are ideal, but dried noodles or instant noodles are just as good if they’re what you have on hand. Once you’ve cooked your ramen broth, put your noodles into the base of the bowl and pour your broth over them.

Make sure you have the essentials ready

Your ramen noodles will start to absorb the broth once they’re added. This means that before you even start the ramen broth process, make sure you’ve got the essentials of a ramen dish ready to go – starting with the absolute must-have, the Soy Marinated Eggs. Soy Eggs are the classic ramen pairings. A delicious soft boiled egg marinated in soy overnight (known as Ajitsuke Tamago) will float on the top of your ramen broth. Its taste is salty, with the soft yolk liquid sweet. While it’s an essential part of the meal, it’s also the part that can take the longest – you can marinate them for a minimum of four hours, however overnight in the fridge is ideal. The longer they are left to marinate, the saltier they will become. When they’re ready, cut them in half and rest them on top of your noodles and broth. For extra sweetness and crunch, you can add Miso Butter Corn over the top of your broth. The buttery corn will add a vivid richness to the soup, as the heat helps the butter melt into your broth.

Add your protein

Chashu Pork is made by simmering and braising pork belly in a mixture of soy sauce, sake and mirin. This moist and tender pork meat takes longer to cook than your average 10-minute meat prep on a pan, but it is worth your time (if you’ve got it). It can really elevate an average bowl of ramen to a showstopper of a dish.

The ideal chashu pork comes out as salty and slightly fatty. The cooking process tenderises the meat and the cooldown process, post-cook, intensifies its flavour and makes it easier to slice. However, if quick dinner prep is what you’re after, then you can cook either one of these two at the same time as your ramen broth is cooking. Ginger & Garlic Pork Mince and Miso Grilled Chicken are two delicious, quick-prep dishes (made in under 30 minutes), using the Oishii Instant Ramen Blend to flavour your grilled chicken or pork mince.

You can make it vegan!

Our base is made from chickpea miso, making it very vegan-friendly. This dish can become very veggie-laden, with Crispy Tofu being a solid choice of protein. Marinate your tofu in a soy sauce and mirin medley and then fry up in a saucepan. It’ll add more texture to your ramen.

Add any other toppings of your choice

Chop and serve an array of other healthy vegetables: spring onions, enoki mushrooms, corn, bean shoots, cabbage, radishes, and nori or wakame (seaweed flakes) and narutomaki (Japanese fish cakes). You can also sprinkle toasted sesame seeds, white pepper and Shichimi Togarashi over for more flavour. Try it with crispy chilli oil for an extra kick.

Enjoy your bowl of ramen!

Whether it’s because of hectic schedules, shifting work priorities or managing a household, you might have thought of ramen as a challenge or as a dish that’s too tricky to make for a midweek meal. We hope that’s no longer the case – Oishii Instant Ramen Blend is a shortcut to a heartening bowl of ramen. You add the fresh toppings, get creative with the levels of condiments and create a flavour base with soy sauce, mirin and sesame oil. Enjoy on the regular, whether on a weeknight or weekend. Oishii!

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