Today’s lunch I made some special Hiyashi Somen (chilled somen). This Japanese food is light and cooling. It is especially good for hot hot summer, and of course suits in tropical countries.
My usual somen (sou-men) cooking would be just somen wheat noodles, tsuyu dipping broth, shredded nori seaweed and a bit of wasabi. Today prepared a lot of toppings for my parents.
Chilled Japanese Somen Noodles / Hiyashi Somen 冷やしそうめん
240 ~ 270 g (3 bundles) dried somen
3 crab sticks
2.5” white radish
1 spring onion
seasoning: salt, mirin, Japanese cooking wine
2/3 cup men no tsuke tsuyu (or make your own bonito broth tsuyu)
2/3 cup boiling water
1. For the dipping sauce, dilute tsuyu as per bottle’s instruction with boiling water. Let cool.
2. Prepare and arrange the toppings:-
- Prawns: boil in boiling water briefly till colour changed, immediately transfer into ice water with ice cubes. Shell, pat-dry and mix with a little pinch of salt & 1/2 tsp Japanese cooking wine.
- Crab sticks: optional to drain a little with some boiling water, cut into strips.
- Egg: break it with a pinch of salt & 1 tsp mirin, pan-fry into an omelette, cut julienne strips.
- Cucumber: cut thin strips.
- White radish: peel, grate finely, squeeze excess juice.
- Spring onion: edge-cut.
3. Over high heat, bring a large pot of water to boil. Put in the somen noodles, stir with chop sticks. Continue boiling about 3 minutes (see the packet) till the noodles cooked through. Drain. Rinse in running water and wash thoroughly.
4. Toss somen with some ice cubes and serve in a separate serving bowl. Serve the chilled somen with toppings and dipping tsuyu. You can serve the tsuyu in a small tea pot.
Note: Choices of other toppings, for e.g. thinly sliced myoga ginger, shredded nori seaweed, ham strips & etc.
If you still have doubt of how to eat this somen. Ok. Pour some tsuyu in a cup. Pick some somen with chopsticks and put into the cup. Simply pick some or a bit of each toppings and a little bit of wasabi putting on top of the noodles. Yes. Slurp. Slurp.