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Shoyu Ramen

Photo: © Kana Okada
Yield 8
After visiting New York City's top ramen spots (including Ippudo NY, Sapporo and Momofuku Noodle Bar), Grace Parisi created her dream ramen with a pork-and-chicken-based broth that gets extra depth of flavor from kombu (seaweed) and shoyu (Japanese soy sauce).

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds chicken necks and backs
  • 1 3-pound rack of pork baby back ribs, cut into 4 sections
  • 1 leek, halved lengthwise
  • 2 ounces fresh ginger, thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 4 garlic
  • 4 water
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons shoyu or other soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 4 1/2-pound boneless pork shoulder butt, trimmed and tied
  • Salt
  • 1 12-by-2-inch piece of kombu, seaweed
  • Shoyu or other soy sauce, for seasoning and brushing
  • 24 ounces fresh or 16 ounces dried chuka soba, curly noodles boiled until al dente
  • 5 ounces baby spinach, steamed
  • 4 soft-boiled eggs, peeled and soaked for 1 hour in equal parts soy sauce and mirin sweet rice wine
  • 2 thinly sliced scallions, 2 sheets of quartered nori for garnishing and seasoning dried seaweed rice vinegar and togarashi Japanese chile powder

How to Make It

  1. Make the Broth: In a large stockpot, combine the chicken, ribs, leek, ginger, garlic, water and shoyu. Bring to a boil.

  2. Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat the oil. Season the pork butt with salt and brown it well on all sides over high heat, 12 minutes; transfer to the stockpot. Simmer the broth over moderately low heat for 2 hours, until the pork butt and ribs are just tender; skim any scum that rises to the surface. Transfer the pork butt and ribs to a platter and refrigerate. Strain the broth and discard the remaining solids.

  3. Return the broth to the pot. Add the kombu and simmer over moderately low heat for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Let cool, then chill and refrigerate the broth overnight.

  4. The Next Day, Prepare the Ramen: Preheat the broiler. Skim the fat off of the broth and discard the kombu. Bring the broth to a simmer. Season with shoyu and keep hot.

  5. Untie the pork butt and slice it across the grain 1/3 inch thick. Cut the ribs between the bones. Arrange the pork slices and ribs on a large baking sheet and brush with shoyu. Broil 8 inches from the heat for 3 minutes, turning once, until the meat is crisp; keep warm.

  6. Divide the cooked noodles among 8 bowls and ladle 1 1/2 cups of broth into each one. Add the spinach in piles. Drain the eggs, cut each one in half lengthwise and set a half in each bowl. Arrange 2 slices of pork butt and 1 rib in each bowl and garnish with the scallions and nori. Serve the ramen immediately, passing the rice vinegar and togarashi at the table.