shiitake miso ramen noodle soup

There are some nights when all I want to do is order takeout, and it was precisely on one of these nights that I decided to learn to make ramen noodle soup - my go-to takeout order. Ramen is originally a Japanese noodle dish and it is marked by flavorful broth, chewy noodles, and a range of colorful ingredients floating in the soup. This soup pairs well with a crisp white wine. You can also vary this recipe by substituting a variety of protein options for the chicken, such as tofu, pork, or shrimp. 

 

  • Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (2 whole breasts, even size and thickness)

  • Toasted sesame oil (2 tablespoons)

  • Salt (1/2 teaspoon to season chicken, plus 3 teaspoons for broth)

  • Fresh corn kernels (1 cup; preferrably cut off 2 fresh corn cobs, or defrosted from frozen)

  • Fresh shiitake mushrooms (1 cup whole)

  • Red bell pepper (1 whole, sliced)

  • Fresh bok choy (3 cups of leaves, bases removed; washed to remove dirt)

  • Fresh red chiles (2 whole, sliced)

  • Green onions (1 bunch, sliced; dark green parts separated from white parts)

  • Dried ramen noodles (6 ounces)

  • Fresh ginger (1 teaspoon, minced)

  • Fresh garlic (1 teaspoon, minced)

  • Grapeseed oil, or another clean-tasting cooking oil (1 tablespoon)

  • Water (6 cups)

  • Soy sauce (2 tablespoons)

  • Red miso paste (1 tablespoon)

  • Hoisin sauce (1/2 teaspoon)

  • Toasted sesame seeds (2 teaspoons)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Unwrap chicken breasts and place in a shallow baking dish. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of sesame oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Ensure chicken is evenly coated on both sides.

  3. Bake chicken for 20 minutes. At 20 minutes, slice into one of the breasts in the center and make sure there is no pink flesh remaining. When done, transfer chicken to a cutting board to let rest.

  4. While the chicken is baking, prepare the other ingredients for the soup. Slice corn kernels off the cobs and set aside in a bowl. 

  5. Separate shiitake mushroom bases from the caps; slice the caps into bite-sized pieces. Set mushroom parts aside.

  6. To prepare bok choy, cut off base from each bunch and separate leaves. Set all leaves into a bowl full of cold water and rinse to remove visible dirt. Dry and set aside.

  7. The bell pepper, red chiles and green onions should be sliced as directed above.

  8. In a large soup pot, saute together remaining 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 tablespoon of grapeseed or other oil, shiitake mushroom bases, fresh ginger and garlic until fragrant. 

  9. Add water, soy sauce, miso paste, hoisin sauce, sliced red chiles, and remaining 3 teaspoons of salt. Bring broth to a simmer and let cook for 15 minutes to develop flavor.

  10. Taste broth at this point to determine if flavors match your preferences. Add more soy sauce if you desire more saltiness.

  11. Add sliced chicken, sliced mushroom caps, bok choy, bell pepper, and green parts of the green onions to the broth. Bring broth back to a simmer and cook until bok choy is bright green in color and bell pepper pieces are cooked.

  12. Add dry ramen noodles to hot broth. Turn off heat and let stand for 5 minutes or according to package. Noodle package should indicate cooking time.

  13. Serve soup in bowls and garnish with sliced white parts of green onion and sesame seeds.