Ramen is a treat around here because we make it with all the good stuff, not the funky noodle waffles you can buy containing the msg packet. That being said it is more effort to make this than microwaving a cup of water but you will be highly rewarded. This could easily be made vegetarian friendly but unless you have a compelling reason to do so, such as, you are vegetarian or a vegetarian friend is coming over, keep the bacon in. It is a reward for your efforts. —thirschfeld
For the dashi and broth:
assorted dried mushrooms, soaked in 2 cups of boiling hot water for 1 hour
two x six inch piece of konbu, wiped with a damp cloth
two inch finger of fresh ginger, sliced into 4 lengthwise slices
thick slices of smokey slab bacon, roasted pork belly or pancetta, about two inches long and 1/4 inch thick
For the Ramen
vegetable or canola oil
assorted fresh mushrooms, portobello, shiitake and crimini, 1/4 inch thick slices
fresh garlic, minced
fresh ginger, minced
yellow miso mixed with 2 teaspoons sake and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar
handful of cilantro
chives or green onions, chopped into batons
red wine vinegar
dried noodles, angel hair pasta, chuukasoba or fresh ramen, cooked and cooled according to the directions on the box
After the dried mushrooms finish soaking strain the liquid into a measuring cup. Squeeze all the moisture from the mushrooms. Finely chop the soaked mushrooms and set them aside. You should have 1 1/2 cups mushroom liquid.
Add water to the mushroom liquid so you have a total of 5 cups. Place the liquid into a pot with the ginger and the konbu. Place the pot over medium high heat and bring it to an almost simmer. Turn off the heat and let the dashi sit for 20 minutes. Strain and put the dashi back into the pot.
Add the soy, sake, mirin, and pork or bacon to the pot. Set the pot over low heat and let it simmer.
While the stock is simmering place a large saute pan over high heat. Add the oil, it should shimmer and shake immedietely, and add the mushrooms. Do not turn the mushrooms you want them to brown deeply.
Once they have browned on both sides add the garlic, soaked mushrooms and ginger. Once it is fragrant add the miso and stir. Then add the soy, red wine vinegar and sake. Toss in a half a handful of cilantro and stir. Remove the pan from the heat.
Turn the heat up under the broth till it just comes to a boil. While you are waiting for the broth to heat run the hottest water your tap can muster over the noodles to warm them. Give them a good shake and then divide them evenly between four bowls.
Ladle broth over the noodles and then top each with a piece of pork or bacon, a healthy amount of mushrooms, cilantro, chives and an egg yolk if you are using it. Serve immediately.