Have you seen ‘UDON’? It is a 2006 movie about a guy who wants to be a comedian abroad in New York but couldn’t make it and broke, returns to his home town of Kagawa prefecture in Shikoku. HIs father owned a fat noodle shop which he had no desire of taking over. He eventually got a job at the local town newspaper as editor of tourist guide book. He accidently created Sanuki noodle boom which is Kagawa’s specialty udon. I like the scene in which he and a lovely colleague go all over town trying different noodle shops. I had the sudden urge to have noodles after watching it. This funny, cute and delicious movie is available on Netflix. You’ve got to see it if you like udon noodles.
Kagawa is the smallest prefecture in Japan. It’s nickname is udon prefecture (うどん県) Many self-serve Sanuki udon eateries available there. Similar to self-serve yogurt shops, you choose noodle sauce and choose your toppings then pay. The price is determined by number of toppings not by weight. Don’t fret! it’s not expensive! Charter the ‘udon taxi’ (about $50 for 1 hour) there and you could try lots of udon shops and taxi drivers really knows udon but I think that will make you udon out for a while. Do you know there is such an udon shop in Seattle? U:DON is the name. Cute, huh? It’s located in University district. I bet students love this good but cheap place.
I like fox (きつね) among toppings the best. The fox is actually fried bean curd sweetened with sugar and soy sauce. There is an old folk tale of how Foxes possess magical power that transform themselves into human to deceive people and their favorite treat is fried bean curd. Some people in Japan worship fox and use bean curd as an offering. Another popular topping is tanuki (たぬき-red raccoon) fried mixed vegetable tempura (かき揚げ). A Tanuki also can turn himself to human or other object and trick people without being mean-spirited but I don’t know if they like fried vegetable tempura though. Today I made a simple udon noodle topped with soft poached egg. We still don’t a have kitchen, remember? This one pot wonder is hearty and easy!
Ingredients for today’s udon dish Serves 1
- Water 300cc
- Dashi (soup stock) 1 packet This one is tea-bag style and specifically for udon noodle.
- 1 Frozen Sanuki udon bundle –no need for defrost, no precook necessary ( I like frozen noodle better than dry ones).
- 1 stalk of Green onion finely sliced.
- Grated ginger (optional)
- Boil water in pan
- Add dashi and simmer for 5 minutes
- Remove dashi packet from pan and put noodle in.
- Cook about 4 minutes.
- Sprinkle with green onion and your favorite topping. My husband likes add a few drops of rice vinegar.
I made the soft poached egg in the microwave using a poached egg gadget but you could make it in same pan as noodle is cooking. Gently drop the egg in after the noodle has cooked a little bit, cook until desired hardness is achieved. Here is another handful of fresh eggs from a friend.
We had snow last Thursday. The second snow fall in March My painting teacher ‘s neighbor built a snow man and a snow kid..Ah may be it’s a pet.Then next day was sunny and warm. Gorgeous display of flowers in front of the grocery store.
I remember something from the movie where someone said “A boom is like a festival, at some point it ends”. That’s something to think about.