The Empty Fridge is a monthly series where we challenge that formidable void and make the best of what's on hand. Join us each month for a new installment, and feel free to share your empty fridge recipes in the comments for this post!
Up this month: Noodle Soup
I've been on a soup kick lately. You name the soup, and I've probably eaten it in the very recent past. So this week, when my fridge was getting pretty sparse, I had soup on the brain. . .
. . . but all of my go-to recipes required ingredients I didn't have (or didn't have enough of). Then I saw the Udon noodles.
I've never made this sort of soup before, and frankly didn't have all of the ingredients to pull it off authentically, so a hybrid was born. A little make-shift soup base (I didn't have miso, so I improvised one with some trumped up chicken broth). . .
. . . some rice wine pickled radishes (to sub in for the brightness of kimchi). . .
. . . and a few other goodies (the crispy shallots are a must!) it came together rather nicely. It's really a sort of Ramen/Udon mash up, but my tastebuds weren't concerned with labels, they just wanted another bowl.
Make-Shift Udon/Ramen Mash Up
- 2 bundles dry Udon noodles (you could substitute another Asian noodle here if you don't have Udon)
- 4 cups chicken broth (or vegetable)
- 2 cups water (for a heavier base, you could use a full 6 cups of broth and forgo the water)
- 3-5 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 1-2 tablespoons of sesame oil (plus a bit for drizzling on the soup at the end)
- 1 cup chopped greens (kale, chard, spinach. . . really whatever you have on hand)
- 1/2 block of firm tofu cut into 3/4" cubes
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 piece of fresh ginger (about 2")
- 1-2 shallots
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup sliced radishes
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 eggs
- 1-2 green onions
Bring the vinegar to a boil. Remove from heat and add the radishes and the pepper flakes. Pour into a jar and set aside to cool.
Place two eggs in a pot of cold water and bring them up to a boil. Cover and let sit for 9 minutes before setting them aside in a cool water bath (you want them to be slightly under hard boiled)
While the eggs are cooking bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the noodles for 3-4 minutes (you want them to have a bit of bite to them). Rinse in cold water and set aside.
In a pan, saute the shallots in the butter over medium-low heat until they are crispy. Place on paper towels to drain.
Slice the garlic and the peeled ginger and saute in the olive oil for 1-2 minutes or until they become fragrant. Add the broth, water, soy sauce and sesame oil to the pot and bring to a gentil simmer. Add the tofu and the greens and cook until just tender. Place a mound of noodles in each bowl and ladle the broth over the noodles. Top with the pickled radishes, half of an egg, some crispy shallots and green onions. Drizzle with a bit of sesame oil and serve.
With the Kids:
*Last time in The Empty Fridge: Butternut Ravioli