SPICY MISO RAMEN WITH CHICKEN MEATBALLS

This Spicy Miso Ramen is prepared with aromatics that are fragrant, chicken meatballs that are juicy, and ramen noodles that are slippery, all of which are coated in a miso broth that is tasty, spicy, and creamy. Making it in just thirty-five minutes is not only simple and quick, but it is also bursting with flavor, extremely warming, and extremely soothing!

INTRODUCTION

Juicy chicken meatballs, ramen noodles that are slippery and hearty, and an incredible savory broth that is both really flavorful and warming on a day when it is chilly or raining with rain! Really, this Spicy Miso Ramen is the ideal supper for any day of the week because it is both quick and easy to prepare!

In addition to being produced with a majority of nutritious components, it can be prepared in a short amount of time on any given weeknight, and it is quite delicious because the chicken meatballs are cooked immediately within the rich broth! In addition to the fact that the meatballs end up being more succulent as a result of this method, they also infuse flavor into the broth, which makes it even more wonderful.

SPICY MISO RAMEN WITH CHICKEN MEATBALLS

A spike of heat from gochujang is added to the soup, which is imbued with the savory umami notes of white miso paste and soy sauce, the nutty and creamy sweetness of peanut butter, and the addition of gochujang. In addition to that, it is seasoned with a few fresh chiles, garlic, ginger, and shallots, which are ingredients that are known to be warming. In addition, I have included milk in order to make it exceptionally silky and to impart a slight creamy touch to it.

As a final touch, the ramen bowls are topped with a drizzle of sesame and chile oil, toasted white and black sesame seeds, and bok choy, spring onion, and sweet corn. These ingredients help to balance out the savory and spicy flavors. On the other hand, you are free to personalize this dish by adding any of your preferred toppings for ramen noodles.

IS THIS TRADITIONAL RAMEN?

In spite of the fact that it is not the conventional method of preparing ramen, which takes more time and necessitates the simmering of bones in water for a considerable amount of time in order to produce the broth, this Spicy Miso Ramen is a speedy variation that is extremely gratifying and full. This is the kind of meal that you prepare when you don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen but you still want to eat something that is incredibly delicious!

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS

  • Quick and easy. It is ready in about thirty-five minutes!
  • Flavorful. The flavor of the broth is enhanced and the flavor of the meatballs are enhanced when they are cooked directly in the soup.
  • Skillful technique. When the pastes are combined with water before being added to the broth, it enables them to be incorporated without any noticeable disruption. During the process of creating the soup, you do not have to exert yourself by using a spatula to help break down the pastes.
  • Silky broth. When milk is added to the soup, it becomes incredibly smooth and has a faint creamy texture. It provides a delicate flavor subtlety and helps to balance out the heat that is caused by the components that are spicy.
  • Hearty, filling and satisfying! On a chilly day, this dish is the ideal choice for a supper because is sure to warm up your insides.

INGREDIENT NOTES AND SUBSTITUTES

For the Chicken Meatballs:

  • Ground Chicken: I used ground chicken, but ground turkey or other ground meat would work just as well. (See ‘Variations’ section below for other protein options).
  • Asian Red Shallots: Or use regular shallots. Alternatively, yellow or red onion can be used in a pinch.
  • Korean Sake: This is a Korean cooking wine that’s used to tenderize and bring out the flavor in meats. You could use a Japanese sake instead too, or omit it if you rather not cook with alcohol.
  • Gochujang: This addictive and popular spicy fermented Korean chili paste probably needs no introduction. It adds a tiny kick of heat to the meatballs, but is also used in the broth to make it flavorful and spicy. These days gochujang can be found in most mainstream supermarkets. Use a GF certified gochujang such as Wholly gochujang if needed.
  • Coriander (Cilantro): Omit if you’re not a fan. No biggie as there’s plenty of flavor in these meatballs already!

SPICY MISO RAMEN WITH CHICKEN MEATBALLS

For the Spicy Miso Ramen Soup:

  • Aromatics: Just some garlic, ginger, fresh red chilies and an Asian red shallot. (See note above for shallot substitutes.) I used Thai Bird’s Eye red chilies, but feel free to use any hot red chilies you can get in your area. You can omit them or use less depending on your heat level preference.
  • White Miso Paste: Known as shiro miso or kome miso, this fermented Japanese soybean paste adds savory umami notes and a mild nutty sweetness to the soup. Look for it in a regular or Asian supermarket or a specialty Japanese ingredients grocery store.
  • Creamy (Smooth) Peanut Butter: To add creamy and nutty flavors! Alternatively, use an Asian white sesame paste (like the one used for Spicy Dan Dan Noodles) or another nut butter. I highly recommend using a commercial peanut butter with added sugar and salt over a natural one. It will result in a more creamy and cohesive soup that isn’t grainy.
  • Low Sodium Light Soy Sauce: Low sodium so that the salt level can be controlled better. Use a gluten-free soy sauce if needed.
  • Canola Oil: Or use any other neutral cooking oil.
  • Pure Chili Oil: This is a pure chili oil without any seeds or flakes. You can use a Chinese or Japanese pure chili oil (La-yu). Omit for a milder broth.
  • Chicken Broth: I like to use a store-bought Asian-style clear chicken broth for my Asian noodle soups. A store-bought pork bone broth would be just as tasty! Feel free to use a regular western style chicken broth, either store-bought or homemade. If using a low sodium broth, you may need to add a little salt to taste.
  • Whole Milk: The secret ingredient that makes the spicy miso ramen broth super silky and creamy! Traditionally soy milk is added to creamy style ramen noodle soups. However, I’ll admit that I’m not a fan of soy milk. Hence, I used regular whole milk as I always have it in my fridge. You can use soy milk if you like or any other plant-based milk.
  • Ramen Noodles: I used vacuum sealed packs of fresh ramen noodles. They’re already cooked and just need a few brief minutes in a pot of boiling water to loosen the strands up. You can find them in an Asian supermarket and some mainstream supermarkets that are well-stocked with international ingredients. You could also use dry ramen noodles instead. Simply discard the seasoning packet if it comes with it and just cook the ramen brick in some boiling water.
  • Optional toppings: I like my spicy miso ramen bowls to be topped with blanched bok choy and spring onion (scallion – green parts only) for some greenery, sweet corn kernels, and toasted white and black sesame seeds. Finally, a drizzle of sesame oil and pure chili oil to finish elevates all the flavors and adds that extra OOMPH-factor! Feel free to switch up the toppings and use other veggies like sliced seared shiitake mushrooms, blanched snow peas, sugar snap peas, etc. Other topping ideas include half of a soft boiled egg for each bowl, fresh mung bean sprouts, or crushed red pepper flakes for all the spice lovers out there.

HOW TO MAKE SPICY MISO RAMEN WITH CHICKEN MEATBALLS

1. Mix the chicken meatballs ingredients. A measuring glass should be used to combine the white miso paste, peanut butter, gochujang, low sodium light soy sauce, and warm water that has been heated. The pastes should be vigorously mixed until they have broken down.

2. Make the sauce. In a mixing bowl of medium size, combine all of the components that will be used to make the chicken meatballs. The texture of the meat combination is smooth, and it is properly mixed to ensure that it is combined.

3. Sauté aromatics. Until the aroma is released, in a small amount of canola oil and chile oil (if used).

4. Build the soup. The chicken broth and sauce mixture should be poured in and stirred together to blend.

5. Add milk. Combine the milk in a uniform manner by stirring it in. It is important to allow the broth to heat up for a few minutes before reducing the heat. The soup should not be boiling.

6. Cook the meatballs.  The meatball should be inserted into the soup using the other teaspoon, while the first teaspoon should be used to scoop up the meat mixture. The process should be repeated until all of the meatballs are in the soup, and then they should be simmered for a few minutes until they are ready to eat.

SPICY MISO RAMEN WITH CHICKEN MEATBALLS

7. Cook the noodles and veggies. The ramen noodles should be cooked in a separate pot of boiling water in accordance with the directions provided on the package. In the final thirty seconds, add the bok choy and blanch it for a short period of time. Once the noodles and greens have been drained, divide them evenly among the dishes. Bringing the water in the kettle back up to a boil and blanching the sweet corn kernels for two minutes is necessary if you intend to use them as a topping. If you want to “shock” the corn kernels, drain them and then run cold water over them.

8. Serve! The bok choy, sweet corn, and spring onion should be placed on top of the noodle bowls after the spicy miso soup has been ladled out equally over them. If desired, drizzle with pure chile oil and sesame oil, and then sprinkle with toasted black and white sesame seeds. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve, and have fun with it!

COOK’S TIPS

  • Adjust spice level to taste. Use less of the (or omit) fresh red chilies and omit the chili oil for both cooking the soup and topping to make it milder. You can also use just 1 tablespoon of gochujang for the broth.
  • Don’t let the broth boil rapidly. It will cause the milk to split. You only need it to be hot and barely simmering to cook the meatballs.
  • Work the proteins in the meat. To yield juicy meatballs, lift the meatball meat mixture and slap it against the bowl a few times. Working the proteins this way instead of just constantly mixing to combine the ingredients will ensure you have smooth and tender meatballs.
  • Add more milk for a creamier broth. If you prefer a creamier broth, add ¾ to 1 cup of milk instead of the ½ cup I’ve indicated.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ’s)

1. How hot is spicy miso ramen?

Ans: This version is pretty hot and spicy due to incorporating fresh red chilies along with the gochujang in the broth. However, the spice level is adjustable. Simply               omit or use less of the chili oil for cooking, fresh red chilies, and gochujang to make a milder spicy miso ramen.

2. Are ramen noodles fried?

Ans: Not all ramen noodles are fried. The fresh ramen used in restaurants are not fried, nor is the ramen noodles that come in vacuum sealed pack. However, dried             instant ramen noodle bricks are fried to partially cook and dehydrate them.

3. Can i use red miso paste instead of white for miso?

Ans: White miso paste is best for making the ramen broth because it is milder and less salty than red miso paste and other darker varieties such as hatcho miso.                   Red miso paste may overpower the ramen broth, which is why I do not recommend using it.

4. How do i store leftover ramen?

Ans: Ideally, this ramen is best eaten immediately after cooking. There is risk of the milk splitting when reheating the leftover soup unless you are using full-fat                     coconut milk. That being said, you can store the spicy miso soup in a sealed airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days if needed. Cook the noodles when               ready to serve and reheat the broth over medium heat in a pot on the stovetop until hot throughout. Be careful to not let the broth boil rapidly when reheating.             Do not store the noodles and soup together in the fridge as the noodles will absorb the soup and bloat over time.

 

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