Although this is an udon (Japanese noodle) recipe, it is definitely not typically Japanese. I wanted to create a thick, chunky sauce full of umami and the main ingredient I used was dried tomatoes.
There are a few ingredients in this recipe that may be a bit harder to find, but it is really worth the effort! I bought these at a Chinese supermarket.
- Fermented broad bean paste (called doubanjiang in Chinese) is essential. Make sure to check the ingredients as there are many types of chilli bean paste and a lot of them are not vegetarian. The Chinese characters are 豆瓣酱. If it says 辛豆瓣酱 then it will be very spicy. The brand I got is Pearl River Bridge Chilli Bean Paste.
- For the topping I used dried beancurd twists (called yuba in Japanese, bai ye jie in Chinese), you can of course use another topping. The brand I got is Yilin Dried Beancurd Twists.
All the other ingredients can be found in ordinary supermarkets.
vegan • 750 kcal per person
For two people:
- 400 g carrots
- 200 g udon noodles
- 10 dried tofu skin knots
For the sauce
- 6 dried tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree
- a handful of dried shiitake
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, crushed in a mortar
- 1 cm ginger, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon miso
- 1/2 teaspoon black bean paste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic oil
Three of the ingredients need soaking: the dried tomatoes, shiitake and the tofu knots (yuba).
- Soak each of these in a separate pot or bowl in freshly boiled water for at least 30 minutes.
- After soaking:
- Squeeze the liquid out of the tomatoes. Keep the soaking liquid.
- Wash the shiitake, then squeeze the liquid out of them and cut the in strips. Keep the soaking liquid.
- Drain the water from the tofu knots
- Bring water to the boil for the noodles and cook the noodles for 8 minutes.
- Meanwhile, wash, peel and dice the carrots and cook the in the microwave for 4 minutes at full power (900W).
- Meanwhile, heat the oil and fry the ginger for a minute or so.
- Add the pumkin seeds, the tomatoes and shiitake and fry over low heat for a few minutes.
- Add the miso, black bean paste and tomato puree and two tablespoons each of the soaking liquid of the tomatoes and shiitake.
- Cook further for a few minutes over low heat, stirring well.