Miso ramen with ginger tofu

A few of my friends are cutting down on meat this year. In a bid of a little support to them and anyone else embarking on eating less meat in January or in general, I thought it would be a good time to post this easy and quick vegan ramen recipe.

You only need a few ingredients, but the result is a hearty and flavoursome ramen which makes a perfect dinner for any winter night, whether you are veggie or not! This is a recipe originally from an older issue of Waitrsoe magazine, but I have adapted slightly to also include ingredients if you are not using a ready made Noodle Kit.

More in Ramen and soups: Quick Beef RamenQuick miso soup with dumplings

Spicy miso ramen with ginger tofu

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Serves 4 | Prep 5 mins | Cook 15 mins
Easy | Vegetarian| Dairy-Free

You’ll need

  • 2x Miso Tasty Ramen Noodle Kit or alternative miso-based ramen noodle kit(or make your own, see below*);
  • 250g sweet ginger tofu;
  • vegetable oil;
  • 300g bok choi, sliced;
  • 4 spring onions, shredded (for serving);
  • soy sauce (for serving).

*If you are not using a noodle kit, you’ll also need:

  • 4x noodle nests;
  • 4x miso soup paste sachets or 8 tbsp miso soup paste;
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil;
  • 4 tbsp sesame seeds.

Cook the noodles in a pan of simmering water for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the tofu in chunks (reserve the marinade) and fry over a medium heat in 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil for 3-4 minutes, until golden. Add the remaining marinade and bubble for 2 minutes, until sticky and set aside. Drain the noodles and return to the pan with the bok choi, miso and sesame oil. Stir in 700ml just-boiled water and season with soy sauce to taste. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Top with the tofu, shredded salad onions and sesame seeds.

Original recipe from Waitrose magazine, no longer available online.



Previously published on this date:

2018 – Carrot & Ginger Bhajis and Spiced Paneer with Dhal

 

Japanese inspired tuna burgers and togarashi fries

A while ago I stumbled upon a delicious tuna burger recipe which had a lot of Japanese ingredients. Unfortunately, I soon lost the recipe but I was set on recreating the flavours on my own. So, here we have it, my own version of a Japanese Inspired Tuna Burgers. I’ve also added a few suggestions for serving – togarashi fries, spicy gochujang mayo and wasabi mayo. I used Kewpie mayo which is a Japanese mayo and it tastes amazing! But you can use standard mayo as well.

More in burgers: Italian-style chicken burgers

Japanese inspired tuna burgers and togarashi fries

Serves 2 | Prep 10 mins | Cooking 30 mins
Easy

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You’ll need:

For the burgers

  • 2 tuna fillets (around 240g), chopped;
  • Thumb-sized piece ginger, finely chopped;
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped;
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped;
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce;
  • 1/2 tsp wasabi;
  • 1/4 tsp chilli sauce (or chilli flaked).

For the chips

  • 400g frozen chips;
  • 1 tsp togarashi chilli powder.
  • 6 tbsp kewpie (Japanese) mayo (or normal mayo);
  • 1 tbsp gochujang paste.

To serve

  • 2 tbsp kewpie mayo;
  • 1 tsp wasabi;
  • burger buns;
  • salad (sliced lettuce, tomato, radish, cucumber etc);
  • crispy onions.

For the burgers: add the tuna, ginger, spring onions and red chilli to a chopped and blitz them until finely chopped and mince has formed. Add the wet ingredients and blitz again. Form two patties from the mixture. Put on a plate, wrap with cling film and leave in the fridge for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the chips according to pack instructions.

While the chips are cooking, prepare your burger ingredients toppings and the two mayos. For the Wasabi mayo, mix 1 tsp wasabi and 2 tbsp kewpie mayo together (you’ll use this for the burgers). For the spicy Gochujang mayo, mix 6 tbsp kewpie mayo with 1 tbsp Gochujang paste.

When the chips are almost ready, heat a griddle pan to high. Once hot, cook the two patties for two minutes on each side, until well browned on each side. When ready, leave them to rest on a board. Halve the burger buns and add face down to the griddle pan to heat a little. Spread some wasabi mayo to the bottom of each bun, followed by the tuna burgers, and any toppings of your choosing (or as suggested above). Serve with the togarashi fries and spicy gochujang mayo.


Previously posted on this date:

== 2018 ==
* Red Velvet Rainbow Cake: https://foodnotesdotblog.wordpress.com/2018/06/10/red-velvet-rainbow-cake/

 

My Month in Food – July (Part 1)

With July almost over, it’s time for me to give you an update of all the new places I’ve visited this month. We have some new spots in Glasgow’s food scene to discuss, as well as some spots that have been here for a while. Big theme this month is the trendy sushiritto (AKA sushi-burrito), which first appeared in Glasgow at Temaki (previously covered here and also featured in my Glasgow best of Lunch spots in town post), can now be found in the West End too at Wudon and Dai Pai. Continuing with the Japanese Theme, I also visited Koko’s Japanese Kitchen, currently residing at Nice N Sleazy. It wouldn’t be me if I don’t feature also some delicious brunch, so you can also read about my visit to Italian cafe North Star.

Koko’s Japanese Kitchen – City Centre – Japanese/Pop Up

Koko’s Japanese Kitchen has been residing at Nice N Sleazy for several months now and it has already received much praise. The menu features a good selection of Japanese home cooking dishes, that cater for the carnivores as well as for those favouring a plant based diet. In fact, I was impressed about the fantastic range of vegan/vegetarian dishes on offer.

The menu is made of small dishes and therefore is perfect for sharing. We went for the Chicken Karaage, kimchi topped fries (this should be a standard menu item EVERYWHERE) and the cheese filled dry wudon dumpling-crips. We weren’t that impressed by the latter of those, but the chicken karaage and the kimchi topped fries were delicious. I will be returning to sample more Japanese deliciousness from Koko’s menu!

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  • ££ – reasonable, ok value for money, but you need to order a couple of dishes to share for a good sized meal.
  • Good for: lunch, dinner, Japanese food, casual dining.

North Star Cafe – West End – Italian/Cafe

North Star has been around on Queen Margaret Drive for a while, and it’s one of the most loved cafes in the area. And there is a good reason for this. Owned by a charming couple from Italy, Ester and Maurizio (and possibly a couple of other friends/family?!), North Star has a real family feel to it. The owners and their staff are always absolutely lovely, chatty and incredibly friendly, and it’s always a delight to pay them a visit. They remember they loyal customers as well as those that pop in occasionally and really make an effort to make everyone feel welcome. That’s not always easy in a cafe quite as busy as this one, but they manage nontheless.

With an open kitchen at the back, the cafe is always filled with noise from the kitchen, background chatter (often in Italian) and smell of delicious food and coffee. Everything about this cafe is authentic – from the atmosphere, the people to the delicious food they make. Their menu features daily specials and regular Italian dishes (expect delicious pasta, risotto, stews…) as well as some non-Italian favourites – Full Scottish breakfast and other standard breakfast items, and French Toast with plenty of choice of toppings.

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On this particular visit, we went for the French Toast – mine topped with maple and berries, and my friend’s with pistachios, and of course, plenty of coffee to wash it down with. But on previous visits, I’ve tried a lot more of their breakfast menu and brought countless friends to get some solid breakfast which also does not cost an arm and a leg! They also offer a lot of freshly made cakes which are definitely worth a try too.

  • ££: Very good value for money, inexpensive;
  • Good for: Breakfast, brunch, lunch, coffee & cake, Italian food.

Wudon – West End – Japanese

Wudon is fairly local to me so I’ve visited it a couple of times over the past few years. When you want Japanese food, they are definitely a robust option. Over the summer, they have also started offering the trendy Sushiritto – a sushi burrito. Chances are, if you like sushi you will also like a sushi burrito. Usually, the only common thing a sushiritto would have with a burrito, is the fact it’s rolled up like one. It doesn’t actually have any ‘Mexican’ flavours, so it’s very much a ‘loaded’ temaki, if anything. AND I LOVE IT! Wudon offers four different flavours – salmon, chicken, beef and tofu, each coming with a unique range of toppings. I went for the Sake Salmon which came with crispy salad and cucumber, tempura flakes and kimchi mayo dressing. It was sublime and I would definitely recommend catching Wudon’s sushirittos before they go!

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  • ££: Moderately priced, sushirittos just under £8 (average price for Glasgow at the moment, slightly cheaper than Temaki)
  • Good for: Japanese food, casual dining.

Dai Pai – West End – Asian Street Food

Dai Pai is a very welcome addition to Byres Road in my opinion. Offering a good variety of Asian Street Food favourites (think ramen, sushi, dumplings, chicken karaage and so much more) in a stylish and relaxed setting. So far it’s been getting very positive reviews but I can’t really give a full ‘verdict’ yet as I’ve only tried their sushirittos. They offer 5 sushiritto flavours – salmon, salmon + tuna, chicken, beef and tofu – and they are all loaded with different toppings depending on what you want. I had the Salmon Chilli Bomb, which came with cucumber, avocado, spicy mayo and pickled ginger and it was also pretty good. I will be going back to Dai Pai to try more of their offering so I’ll update my short review in coming months to feature more about Dai Pai.

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  • ££: Moderately priced from what I saw of the menu. Sushirittos start at £6.95, slightly cheaper than Wudon and Temaki.
  • Good for: Asian street food, casual dining.

NB: I liked Wudon’s sushiritto slightly better than Dai Pai’s in terms of taste, but Dai Pai’s are the best in terms of how well filled they are! But it’s a very narrow margin and they are both amazing. You won’t be disappointed whichever one you choose!


That’s all for Part 1. In Part 2, expect to read about Glasgow new comer Absurd Bird, west end’s Kelbourn Saint, Cafe Zique, Finnieston’s The Grunting Growler and Partick’s Six Degrees North.

 

My week of food #9 (19-25 Mar)

Not every week of eating out can be spectacular. I know that… but I guess I have been pretty lucky over the past couple of months and have somehow managed to mostly have good food. Last week, however, had some real ups and downs. With two notable exclusions it has been mostly unimpressive food.

Tuesday – Bar bites @ Strip Joint (Finnieston)

Can’t believe I’m writing this, but my friend published a book last week! And of course, there was celebrations to be had. A good number of people headed over to Strip Joint in Finnieston for some drinks mostly, but some of us were hungry so we had to get food too. The bar itself isn’t very notable, it’s pretty standard as far as pubs go and it pales in comparison with what Finnieston has to offer. The food was even less notable. I ordered the chicken wings to share with my partner. Others had pizza or nachos. Our chicken wings were so dry and tasteless, and I think some of the worst I’ve had in Glasgow. Really no excuse as chicken wings is one of the simplest things one can cook! We asked for some hot sauce, and for the first time ever, I was charged for a bit of sriracha on the side… As for the pizza – no one was particularly impressed by it and it looked like it was one of the frozen ready made ones. Those who ordered the nachos looked happier and indeed they had some very big lumps of nachos to eat through which were tastier than our chicken wings. I won’t be rushing back.

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Chicken wings @ Strip Joint
  • ££: ~£20 for chicken wings, sweet potato fries and a couple of drinks. Ok for price but the food wasn’t worth it.
  • Good for: I guess that depends on your taste, but the only thing I enjoyed there was my standard rum & coke. The staff are pretty nice too.

Wednesday – Sushi Burritos @ Temaki (City Centre)

You might remember that Temaki featured in my “Best of Lunch Joints in Glasgow” post and there is a good reason for this. It’s simple – their sushi burritos are pretty good and they also offer other Japanese style food at reasonable price in their Lunch Menu too. I had the Salmon & Avocado sushi burrito and it was good. It packs a good amount of fish against some fresh salad and in this case Avocado. There are plenty to choose from and the only one I didn’t like so far is their Volcano one (melted cheese and raw fish? No, thank you!). I have to confess that though I’ve been to Temaki a number of times I’ve not tried their Ramen, Katsu or other dishes… But, on the plus side – their sushi is pretty good which is why I haven’t ventured outside of their sushi offering!

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Salmon & Avocado Sushi Burrito
  • ££ – £9 sushi burritos, £6.50 for other dishes on their lunch menu;
  • Good for: Sushi burritos and sushi! Also good for a reasonably priced and quick lunch.

Wednesday – Dinner @ ASK Italian (City Centre)

So far we have had the bad, the good and now for the mediocre. ASK Italian is a chain restaurant offering Italian food. I’m not a particular fan of it, as you know Glasgow has some fantastic Italian restaurants I prefer to go to, but it’s okay for what it offers and it’s reasonably priced. I headed there with my family as we needed something close to the bus station and being a Cineworld Unlimited card holder, I get a good discount on pizza and pasta. I like some of the touches in the restaurant in terms of its décor, like the cooking utensils all around. As far as the food goes – it’s quickly served and tasty enough. We had two calzone filled with pepperoni, ragu, tomato & mozzarella while my mother had the Tuscan bread salad. I’m not a massive chain restaurant go-er, but as far as they come, ASK Italian is okay.

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Calzone at Ask Italian
  • ££: Our bill was under £30 due to my discount, but most pizza and pasta dishes are around £10+.
  • Good for: a quick meal when you are after some Italian food.

Friday – Lunch @ Ramen Dayo (City Centre)

I’ve written about Ramen Dayo before so I’m not going to say much more than what I’ve already said. Best ramen in Glasgow, in my humble opinion! This time though I wasn’t feeling like eating ramen so I ordered the Karachi chicken and some gyoza. Their gyoza’s are outstanding. I’ve tried pork, chicken, veg and bulgogi beef and they are ALL good. The Karachi chicken was also really tasty and very crispy so would happily have again. The only thing I wish for is that Ramen Dayo expend their menu ever so slightly to include some more side or small dish options. However, if it’s ramen you are after – get it there.

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Chicken Karage @ Ramen Dayo
  • ££: Most ramen dishes are under £10. The side dishes are around £5.
  • Good for: when you need to satisfy your ramen craving.

Sunday – Dinner @ Crossing the Rubicon (West End)

I posted about Crossing the Rubicon very recently and I admitted that I wasn’t fan of it when it first came about but I had noted that they had improved their menu though still very mediocre Indian style food. This time around I ordered The Rubicon Frankie (think an Indian style burrito), masala chips – soggy and tasteless at the same time… – and poppodoms and onions. Nothing was outstanding, but The Rubcion Frankie is probably my favourite. What was quite disappointing actually was that the restaurant charged us a double portion of poppodoms because we had 2 poppodoms (for two people) – when on the menu it says “poppodomS with chutney”- implying that a portion includes multiple poppodoms. Hardly bothered over the extra £1.50 but it’s a matter of principle. My friend ordered the vegetable curry which literally had one piece of carrot in it and the rest was sauce and rice. He ended up not eating the majority of it as it was so disappointing. They really need to up their flavour game to make their fusion food work.

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The Rubicon Frankie @ Crossing the Rubicon
  • ££: Good priced dishes from around £4-£8;
  • Good for: events – live music, open mic, and a really good quiz night on a Sunday!

That’s it for this week, folks! Here is hoping for some better food next week…

~Em

Steak & Green Bean Stir Fry

A good stir-fry is perfect for a quick dinner after a busy day. Usually requires a little effort and combines a good and healthy mix of veg, regardless if you are having a meat or vegetable variety. This particular stir-fry took less than 30 minutes from the start of prep to serving and it was just what I needed after coming home a bit late. It’s also a relatively simple stir-fry which packs just enough flavour and is really no fuss. Feel free to add some chilli and garlic for a bit more kick as well as more veg to make it a bit more colourful. For the recipe below, I took my inspiration from Waitrose magazine, issue January 2018 and their “Japanese-style beef and broccoli noodles”. You can find the original recipe on the Waitrose website.

Steak & Green Bean Stir Fry

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Serves 2 | Takes 30 mins | Easy

You need:

  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil;
  • 2 onions, sliced;
  • 100g folded rice noodles OR 200g straight to wok noodles;
  • 200g green beans, trimmed;
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce;
  • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar;
  • 1 tsp cornflour;
  • beef steaks (about 275g), thinly sliced;
  • 2cm fresh root ginger, sliced into matchsticks;
  • handful coriander, roughly chopped;
  • 1/2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted, to serve (optional).

Method:

  1. If using folded rice noodles, soak them in hot water as per pack instructions (about 5 mins). Mix the soy sauce, vinegar, cornflour and 2tbsp water and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a wok. When hot, add the onions and cook for 5-10 minutes until browned and softened. Add the steak and ginger and cook for 2 minutes or until browned on all sides. Add the green beans for another 2-3 minutes until they start to soften a little bit. Finally, add the soy sauce mixture and the noodles. Stir fry everything for another minute or so until everything is well covered by the sauce.
  3. Serving: split between two plates, top with the chopped coriander and the sesame seeds.