Sorry for the delay gang! I have been ready for the last two parts of this series for a few days but I kept leaving my camera at home so I couldn’t upload my pics. Forgive me?

Okay, So in the first part of the Udon Series, I decided to start with the basics. Instant Udon. Kind of Like Ramen but with Udon. During my search for Udon Recipes, I was getting intimidated by all the ingredients that I would need to get for the broth (Dashi stock) and not being able to read labels was not helping. I sought some advice from some people I knew and some I knew had experience in Food.
Christo pointed me in the direction of some Asian markets in my neighborhood where I could pick up a few more items to make my dashi. As you have read in the previous post, i made the instant suff and sort of know what to expect from Udon when I set out to make my own.
I got the the market and took my sweet and precious time going through each and every aisle. I picked up everything and looked for some words I recognized. It was difficult. After I picked up several things that were not on my list (Pocky, wasabi peas, shumai) I finally asked the clerk to help me find my dashi. She helped way beyond what was asked of her. I was excited. She not only pointed me in the direction of the dashi but handed me a bottle that looked like soy sauce and told me how she makes HER Udon. Which is why there are 3 parts to this and not two. I am adding in the “recipe” (if you will) from a true Udon lover.
I already had the noodles but she gave me a bottle of “stuff” and a small red bottle of chili powder. She didn’t really have an exact recipe but told me it was easy to adjust for my taste. I read the ingredients and it pretty much had everything in it that I was looking for: Dashi, mirin, soy sauce… etc.

I started with 2 cups of water. I brought it to a boil and added 2 tbsp of the stuff… that wasn’t enough- not even close to enough. But that is what trial and error is for. I estimated about 1/2 cup of “stuff” 2 cups of water. I added fresh garlic and scallions along with a sprinkle and i mean a small sprinkle of ginger. When it started to boil I added my noodles and let it heat the noodles (i used pre-cooked udon noodles). And with about 2 minutes left to heat, I added some shrimp and enoki mushrooms.

I love how quickly shrimp cook! And i really loved how well the shrimp went into this soup… its not rocket science since I put seafood in a fish stock… but sometimes a soup is good without anything but noodles and and broth. The shrimp added a nice touch. yum.

I was really happy with the flavors going on in this soup and I remembered the chili powder. The woman was very persistent about adding the chili powder. I liberally sprinkled the chili powder onto my soup.
Holy cow.
The woman was clearly trying to make me fall in love with soup. This chili powder was an amazing addition to my already delicious soup. It gave it a nice dose of heat without compromising the flavor.
I cannot wait to try the recipe from scratch because the instant Udon was good, the semi-homemade stuff was great…I only predict that it will get even better from here! It was a smart move on my part to start small and work my way up the Udon Ladder!
Oh and if anyone reading knows what the bottle of “stuff” is, do SHARE!
UPDATE: Larry from asianfoodgrocer.com has read the post and left VERY helpful tips for anyone considering loggin on and making your own udon creation!
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