There is nothing more comforting than a big bowl of steaming hot ramen on a cold day. Granted we're still waiting for that beloved Autumn chill up in Newcastle, but that won't stop me willing the leaves to turn amber and the nights to draw in dark. I long for hats, jumpers and cosy mittens. Long walks in the brisk Autumn air and settling down in front of an old movie with a huge bowl of spicy tofu ramen.
Since our household became mostly meat free (I still sneak some animal into my portions from time to time), I've really came to enjoy tofu. Almost to the point where I don't miss the meat in most of our favorite meals. I actually prefer these little cubes of beancurd in fajitas to chicken these days, I never thought I'd say that!
While I am enjoying eating tofu, preparing it is a bit of a ball-ache. Pressing out the excess liquid is a task I can do without after a hard day at work. That's where Cauldron* marinated tofu pieces come in. Pre-squeezed, pre-chopped and pre-marinated, they're my little lifesaver.
There's one thing you simply must not skip when making this ramen, and that is the soft boiled egg. Yes, peeling a soft boiled egg is as close to hell as you can get but I promise it's worth the effort. I'll even go as far as to say it's my favorite part of the whole meal.
Spicy Tofu RamenIngredients
Adapted from Pinch of Yum
Adapted from Pinch of Yum
- For the Ramen:
- 1 Onion
- 1tbsp Red miso paste or powder disolved in 125ml boiling water
- 1tbsp White miso paste or powder disolved in 125ml boiling water
- 3tbsp Sambal Oelek - chilli paste found in Asian supermarkets
- 6 Garlic cloves
- 2" Piece of ginger
- 3tbsp Mirin
- 2tbsp Olive oil
- 1tbsp Sesame oil
- For the Broth:
- 1 pack Cauldron marinated tofu pieces
- 1tbsp Olive oil
- 4 Large eggs
- 150g Chestnut mushrooms
- 1ltr Vegetable stock
- 350ml Unsweetened soy milk
- 200g Ramen noodles - Thin egg noodles
- 4 Spring onions
- Put all of the miso paste ingredients and pulse until it forms a thick, spicy paste. You'll only need around half of the mixture so pop the rest in a tupperware box and freeze for a later date.
- Heat 1tbsp olive oil in a large, deep frying pan and brown the tofu until crispy. Add 3tbsp of the miso paste and stir to coat the tofu. Fry for another minute then tip it out on a plate for later.
- For the broth, tip the sliced mushrooms into the tofu pan and fry until brown. Add 1tbsp of the miso paste and fry for another minute. Add in the soy milk and stock and bring the broth to a simmer. Place the remaining spicy miso paste in a metal sieve and lower it into the broth. Using a spoon stir the paste around the sieve, pushing the juicy bits through until most of it has dissolved. Discard whatever remains. Don't just tip the paste right into the broth as this will make the soup lumpy and thick, eww! Give the broth a little taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
- Bring two pans of water to the boil. In one pan cook your ramen noodles to the packets instructions. Pop the 4 large eggs in the other pan, boil for 7 minutes before removing from the pan and running under cold water to stop the cooking process. Peel the eggs carefully and set aside.(I usually do this under running water as the shell comes away a little easier)
- Divide the cooked noodles between four bowls and top up with the mushroom broth. Top each bowl with a handful of tofu, some chopped spring onions and a boiled egg cut in half. Drizzle with a little sesame oil and enjoy.
*Not sponsored, just really like the product :)