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)


Esi said...

I have a feeling you will try again..and it will be awesome

Jenn said...

You can't resist the power of the ramen. :)

Anna A. said...

TALFs gettin randy with the ramen!

Gastronomer said...

That's so cool that you were inspired to make ramen at home. I suggest asking Ila of I nom things if she's got a recipe for a killer miso broth. I bet she does!

Make it perfect!

LetMeEatCake Eat With Me! said...

I'm sure you will figure out what was lacking and try again. It sure does look good in the picture though.

Anisha said...

Good first try! I just made miso soup for the first time too, using red miso paste. I referred to Ila from i nom things too!

Can't wait to read about the next attempt :)

Diana said...

Esi - Thanks, friend! I'm sure you'll be one of the first to hear about it when I do.

Jenn - No, no you can't! :)

Anna - You know you want to get randy with it too - I can see the vegan glint in your eye.

Cathy - Thanks for the tip - I'll send her a note!

Nastassia - I was kind of proud of how pretty it looked. :) Too bad the taste didn't live up to the appearance.

Anisha - I'll have to try red miso next time - thanks!

The Active Foodie said...

So THIS is why you had the extra dashi on hand! ;) Totally reminds me of my Taiwanese Ramen Soup experiment I just had, I tried it at the restaurant, loved it, found the recipe, and viola!