Ramen for Grown-ups

In Chinese, Japanese, Pasta, Quick Meal, Salad, Soup, Vegetables on June 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm

I’m sure at some point in your life you’ve all gone through a ramen noodle phase – 10 packages for 1 buck fits any student or non-for-profit professional’s budget.  I experienced ramen overload in elementary and junior high school.  It was one of the very few things I could cook without making a mess or burning the house down.  My sister and I would take turns or work together to make the soup, and it was a great after school snack.  Once I could actually understand labels and ingredients, I started to shy away from ramen, cup of noodles, or any other packaged noodle soup that had a flavor packet included.  As an adult, I still can’t really stand ramen, even if it’s at a restaurant.  I find that it’s even saltier than its packaged version, and I feel so bloated and thirsty after, and then an hour later I’m still hungry.

One soup I still like is egg drop soup.  Chemicals and MSG aside, it’s a pretty filling appetizer.  I used to order it frequently with my Chinese delivery, but after confirming that every place uses chicken broth I’ve stopped.  Since then, I’ve learned to make it on my own!  It’s even better than delivery, in my opinion, and much healthier, too.  If you add noodles and/or dumplings, it can become a meal all on its own!  Just remember to add some veggies in there.  Since it had rained Monday, the kitchen was cool enough to make some of this soup for dinner.  Luckily I still had some Pok Choy left on its last limb, and a fresh bunch of Bok Choy, so I had plenty of material to create a well balanced one-pot meal.

Egg Drop Soup with Bok Choy, Udon, and Dumplings

Serves 4 as an appetizer, 2 as a main

1 quart (32 oz) vegetable broth (chicken broth if not vegetarian)
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tsp ginger, minced
2 cup tightly packed chopped Bok Choy (or other greens like collards, napa cabbage, watercress, etc)
2 tsp corn starch
1 egg + 2 egg whites, lightly beaten

Cooked noodles (I used whole wheat udon) and dumplings (I used both shrimp and chicken gyoza for Nick)

I boiled some water for the udon noodles, and cooked them according to the box.  During that time, I worked on the soup.

I brought the broth to a boil, and added the soy sauce, scallions, ginger, and Pok Choy (what I had left over from last week).

After about 5 minutes, I spooned out about a tbsp of liquid to mix with the corn starch.

I whisked them together with a fork until it formed a creamy consistency.

I added the mixture to the soup pot, and mixed with a wooden spoon.  Then I let the soup boil a little bit more to thicken, and lightly scrambled the eggs.  Adding the eggs to the pot requires some patience; you have to slowly stream it in and mix the broth with a spoon in the other hand.  Otherwise, the eggs clump up and you don’t get that streamed result.

If you’re gonna make the dumplings, I’d advise cooking them in the noodle pot.  Just add them 2 minutes before the udon is done.  If you try to add them to the soup pot and THEN stir in the eggs, your dumplings will break up into the soup, and that’s no fun.

To serve, spoon in some soup, and then add in as many noodles and dumplings as you’d like.

I also served a simple salad of red leafy lettuce from this week’s share with Japanese carrot ginger dressing.

You can also omit either/or if you’re just diggin’ the broth.  I sometimes prefer just the simple version, smothered with sriracha.  Or, if I’m lucky, I’ve still got some packets of red hot sauce from take out.  Then I’m happier than a school girl with her 10 cent ramen.

  1. This looks so yummy. Definitely making it tonight!

  2. Who needs take out when you are whipping up such delicious meals!

    Come and add this recipe to the link party…

    ps: I totally am craving a bowl of this now…yum!

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