Friday, March 12, 2010
Miso Veggie Ramen: Attempt #1
It is a universal known truth known inside my head that if I post about something in the morning – a recipe or restaurant meal, I will inevitable crave it for the rest of the day. And the next day, and the following day, and the day after that, until I finally give in and either make the recipe again, go back to the restaurant where the memorable meal took place, or attempt to recreate said memorable meal at home.
(It’s really taxing work being a food blogger.)
Sometimes this (non)occupational hazard is a good thing. I hit the nail on the head with an open-faced asparagus and fried egg sandwich that tastes as good as (if not superior to) the version I regularly enjoy at Zinc Cafe in Corona del Mar. Or I discover that the LA Times’ wild mushroom sauce that is delicious over risotto is even better over barley risotto.
Other times I spend $15 on ingredients to make a tofu and veggie miso ramen like the one I enjoyed at Naga Naga Ramen that only cost me $6.95 on Tuesday night, and things go a little… bland.
The nontraditional miso ramen I made with tofu, kale, corn, green onions, carrots, shiitakes and ramen last night wasn’t terrible. It just lacked a certain oomph – the kind of oomph that would make me crave it again. Or, at the very least, not grow tired of it mid-way through the bowl.
I thought I was doing everything right. I went to a Japanese market to get powdered dashi for the broth. I bought wakame (dried seaweed) to reconstitute in boiling water. And I even asked someone who worked at the market which miso he would recommend (a mild white shiro miso that I think was, ultimately, part of the reason my broth lacked potency). Yet even with all my efforts and good intentions, my dinner didn’t come close to any of the umamified miso-based soups I’ve encountered in the past.
So now the question remains – will I attempt to make a bastardized bowl of veggie ramen again?
Stay tuned… (because I have no idea)