Upon relocating to Portland this past summer, my babes and I have dived head on into our interest in exploring asian flavors and cooking techniques - thanks to the ease of sourcing so many ingredients that were not commonly found in northern Michigan grocery stores. King of those explorations for me personally has been Japanese noodle dishes. From rich homemade ramen broths packed with fresh noodles to traditional Japanese hot pots to stir fried noodles like these... I'm in noodle heaven!
This noodle heaven is 100% supported by the ease of acquiring fresh noodles here in Portland, which open up a whole new world of flavor creation and exploration. I've gotten in the habit of purchasing a rather large quantity when we get out to the big asian grocery stores, and keeping them in the freezer so we always have them on hand. If you live far from sources of ingredients like these, might I suggest doing the same... I highly doubt you'll be disappointed! That said, if you don't have access to fresh noodles, this dish will still taste absolutely great if made with dry noodles.
This noodle dish I'm sharing with you today comes together in less than twenty minutes and is packed with major umami flavors, as so many Japanese dishes are. It's a simple sautee of veggies, some protein, those comforting noodles, and a basic sauce. They make a magical quick weeknight dinner, and may just be the ultimate comfort food.
I've included a whole list of options for adding protein to this dish, because I know everyone has different protein preferences, and these noodles will work with any one of them. Personally, I used slices of pork shoulder that was cooked in a previous dinner's ramen broth. As for the veggies, carrots and asian greens are a traditional take on this dish but you can easily mix things up by including any combination of veggies you have on hand. This dish is an ultimate fridge-clearing dinner!!
Yakiudon (Stir Fried Udon Noodles)
Inspired by I am a Food Blog and a lifelong love of stir fried noodles!
Makes one hearty portion, or two smaller portions perfect for serving alongside a big salad.
1 Tbsp high heat oil (I use sunflower)
1/2 medium onion - diced
1 medium carrot - sliced into thin rounds or rectangles
6 oz fresh udon noodles - cooked (or dried udon, though do buy the fresh if you can!)
4oz beef, chicken, pork or tofu - cooked and cut into small pieces
3 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp mirin
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp dashi powder
1 cup tatsoi (or bok choy) - roughly chopped
scallions to garnish
- Heat oil in a medium pan over medium heat, then add onions. Sautee until the onions become translucent, about five minutes.
- Add the carrots and continue to sautee, stirring occasionally, until the onions are browning and the carrots have softened a bit.
- Add cooked noodles and protein, soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, and dashi powder and carefully toss until noodles are evenly coated.
- Continue cooking and stirring occasionally until all ingredients are hot (in case the noodles and protein weren't hot when you added them). Finally, toss in the tatsoi and stir to combine, leaving the pan over the heat until the tatsoi has cooked just slightly (this takes less than one minute).
- Remove from heat, and garnish with scallions.