How to make it: Nancy Singleton Hachisu's chicken ramen recipe

The Saitama-based food writer shares her chicken ramen recipe – one of Japan's most popular culinary offeringsSaturday, 15 September 2018

By Nancy Singleton Hachisu
Chicken ramen with homemade noodles

In Japan, there are wonderful ramen shops in every town, but this delicious version — made with roasted chicken thighs and homemade noodles, comes a close second.

Serves: 6
Takes: 4 hrs 15 mins

Ingredients

For the broth
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (675g total)
2 small carrots, cut into (3 cm) lengths
200g negi or spring onions, cut into 3 cm lengths
2cm piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced crosswise
1 tsp flaky sea salt
2 tbsp gold sesame oil
brown rice miso or soy sauce, for flavouring

For the noodles
300g plain flour, plus more for sprinkling
2 tbsp gold sesame oil
2 whole eggs, plus 2 yolks, at room temperature

For the toppings
200g greens, such as komatsuna, bok choy, or spinach, blanched, squeezed, and chopped
3 tbsp finely chopped negi or spring onions
3 eggs, at room temperature, boiled for 8 mins, refreshed, peeled, and halved lengthwise
1 sheet nori, cut into sixths
rayu (chilli oil), optional
shichimi togarashi (seven-spice powder), optional

Method
1 For the broth: preheat the oven to 230°C, fan 210°C, gas 8. Toss the chicken, carrots, negi, and ginger with the salt. Rub with the sesame oil and arrange in an oven dish. Roast for 35 mins, until nicely browned.
2 Tip the chicken and veg into a large pot and add 4ltr cold water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, and cook, covered, for 1 hr.
3 Remove the chicken and shred the meat into a bowl. Wet the meat with a scoop of broth. Return the bones to the pot and continue simmering, uncovered, for 30 mins. Strain into a clean pot and discard the bones and veg.
4 Meanwhile, make the noodles. Place the flour in a large bowl and drizzle in the sesame oil. Mix with your fingers until pebbly. Make a well and break in the whole eggs and yolks. Mix with your fingers until the eggs and flour are incorporated, but the dough is crumbly. Turn out onto a work surface and knead until smooth and pliable (about 5 mins). Let the dough rest for at least 30 mins.
5 Roll out the dough using a seimenki [noodle machine] or Italian pasta machine. Cut into thin noodles, approximately 3mm wide. Cut into 22cm lengths using a pizza cutter. Sprinkle with flour and toss to prevent sticking, but keep the noodles aligned.
6 Fill a large pot three-quarters full of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
7 Bring the broth to a simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce it to low. Prepare 6 large donburi [deep soup bowls], measuring in your choice of flavouring: 2 tbsp miso or 4 tsp soy sauce per bowl . Whisk 4 tbsp broth into each bowl to emulsify the flavouring.
8 Add the noodles to the boiling water and cook for 2 mins. While the noodles are cooking, add about 350ml broth into each bowl and whisk to combine with the flavouring liquid.
9 Drain the noodles and divide the noodles among the bowls. Working quickly (so the broth does not cool), keeping each ingredient in its own area, add 2 heaped tbsp chicken meat, 2 heaped tbsp greens, ½ tbsp negi, an egg half, and a small piece of nori. If desired, add spice with rayu (for soy sauce ramen) or shichimi togarashi (for miso ramen).

Read our interview with Nancy Singleton Hachisu.

Published in Issue 1 of National Geographic Traveller Food

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