Yaki Udon

Posted June 17th, 2009 in Food No Comments »
In Japan there are two main noodles people eat : soba, and udon.  Soba is mainly eaten around Eastern side of Japan = Kantou (eg: Tokyo, Chiba, Kanazawa etc) and udon is mainly eaten around Western side = Kansai (eg: Kyoto, Osaka, Nara etc).  I don’t know why these two regions separate things, but this is true.  Yes, people in Kansai also eat soba, of course, but they eat udon more than soba.  You can find lots of udon restaurants in Kansai area, but I’ve never seen any restaurants which specialize in soba noodle.
I’m from Kansai (Western Japan), so I eat udon a lot.  Actually udon is one of my favorite food.  My friend who is from Eastern Japan says “udon is too heavy” “no taste” “bold” “too chunky” , but I like this food.  In my opinion, soba is just thin buckwheat noodle, and nothing special.  Well I don’t mind eating them but if there’s a choice between udon and soba, I’d go for udon always.
… Anyway, I like udon and usually eat in soup, such as Kitsune udon, Tamago-toji udon, An-kake udon, Zaru udon, Curry udon etc.  Even though I prefer soup udon, I sometimes feel like Yaki udon (stir-fried udon) for a change.  Yaki udon is just stir-fried udon noodle with some vegetables and meat/seafood.  I like the texture; it’s kind of chewy.
I had squid in my freezer, so I cooked Ika (squid) yaki udon.
<Ika Yaki Udon>

  • 1 portion udon noodle
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp mirin
  • 1/2 tsp dashi powder
  • 1 tsp oyster sauce
  • 1/2 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tbs spring onion – chopped
  • 1/8 onion – sliced
  • 1/8 carrot – jullienne
  • few pieces squid – defrosted
  1. If you are using dry udon noodle, you need to cook the noodle in boiling water first.  If you are using frozen udon, briefly defrost in hot water.  If you are using fresh udon, simply pour boiling water over and loosen it up.  Drain.
  2. Heat 1 tbs of oil in a frying pan, and stir-fry sliced onion, carrot and spring onion.  Add squid and ginger together, fry over high heat until well-cooked.
  3. Add udon.  Udon noodle really stick to the pan, so I recommend to add little amount of water into the pan once after adding udon noodle.  Briefly stir-fry (don’t stir too much otherwise udon noodle break and become mushy)
  4. Add sauces and mix through.
  5. Garnish with chopped spring onion, bonito flakes and red ginger.

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