Weeknight Veggie Ramen
Updated: May 4, 2020
Warming broth, slurpy silky egg noodles, umami-rich flavour, and spicy chilli oil. This veggie packed ramen is surprisingly simple and quick to whip up on a weeknight! Just throw your ginger and alliums in a pot with oil, sesame seeds and stock or water. Make some chilli oil, prep some veggies, and come back a few hours later to this wonderfully flavourful meal. Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think!
PS. To make this extra no fuss you can use store bought ramen noodles and chilli oil, but I’ve also included how to make your own below if you want to!
For the chilli oil:
1 cup canola oil (or any neutral oil)
1 tablespoon of sesame oil
2 tablespoons of dried chilli flakes
1 teaspoon of cloves
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
3 fresh red chilli's, sliced
1 small knob of ginger, peeled
1 teaspoon of salt
For the egg noodles:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon cold water
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups of type 00 white flour
Handful of fine semolina for dusting (or more flour)
For the veggie ramen:
1/4 cup of canola oil (or any neutral oil)
1 tablespoon of sesame oil
2 tablespoons of dried chilli flakes
1 tablespoon of white sesame seeds
1 large onion, thinly sliced and divided
1 fresh red chilli, thinly sliced and divided
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 thumb sized knob of fresh ginger, peeled, thinly sliced
2/3 cup of passatta or 1/4 cup of tomato paste
1 can of whole peeled tomatoes
2 litres of water or vegetable stock (I used water in this recipe)
3 - 4 tablespoons of tamari or soy sauce
4 small Chinese broccoli (bok choy is also good)
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
4 spring onions, roughly chopped, to serve
1 tablespoon of chilli oil, to serve
Optional: Soft boiled eggs and nori sheets for serving
To make the chilli oil:
In a saucepan over medium heat add all ingredients (oils, spices, fresh chilli etc). Cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until the oil has turned a deep red colour and is very fragrant. Be careful not to let the oil smoke at any point as it will burn the spices and change the flavour.
Sieve out whole spices and chilli, and using a funnel (be careful as the oil will be very hot) pour oil into a jar. Set aside to cool before storing it in the fridge for up to 3 months.
To make the ramen:
In a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat, add oils, garlic, ginger, onion, fresh chilli and chilli flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes until onion is translucent. Stir in sesame seeds, salt and cracked pepper and cook for a further minute.
Add canned tomatoes, passatta or tomato paste, water or stock to the pot and cook on high heat, stirring occasionally, until it begins to boil. Add tamari or soy sauce and reduce heat to low. Cover pot and let simmer for at least a couple of hours or until you are ready to serve! (the longer you leave the ramen broth to cook the more flavour it will develop).
If you are making egg noodles please see the next section, otherwise if you are using packet noodles, cook in boiling water according to packet instructions just before you are ready to serve and refer to the assembly section of this recipe.
To make the egg noodles:
In a mixing bowl add flour, salt, eggs and oil. Mix with your hands until the dough comes together. If your dough seems too crumbly, or its not holding together well, add the cold water and/or another teaspoon of oil.
Flour a chopping board and place dough on it. Knead the dough (for no more than 2 minutes) to form a ball. Flatten the dough so it is about 10 cms thick and then tightly wrap in cling wrap. Set this aside for at least an hour and a half.
Set up a pasta machine, preferably with a noodle or spaghetti attachment.
Divide dough into 4 equal pieces. One at a time (wrap up rest of dough while you work on one piece) roll it out with a rolling pin until 4 cms thick. Next work the dough through the pasta machine on the various thickness settings, until about the 2nd to last thickness setting (I've found ramen noodles are better slightly thicker) and you have a long piece of pasta that you can just see the light through.
Put the pasta sheet through the noodle/spaghetti attachment, and once cut dust thoroughly with semolina or flour to prevent it from drying out.
If you are having Chinese broccoli or bok choy with the ramen prep this now. Wash, and then cut any large stalks in half. Steam greens for no more than 8 minutes and set aside.
If you are having eggs with your ramen cook these now. I like to cook mine soft boiled - so gooey yolk but hard whites. To do this, in a pot of boiling water add your eggs. Set a timer for 6 and half minutes, when the time is up immediately take the eggs out and place them in a bowl full of ice water to stop them from cooking further. Depending on how well done you like your eggs, if you would like them more jammy cook between 7-8 minutes, and well done around 10 minutes. Once your eggs are cooked, peel away the shell and set aside.
Strain out any large pieces of onion or tomato from your ramen broth and discard. Taste the ramen broth for seasoning and adjust accordingly. I added more salt, tamari (soy sauce) and chilli oil. Set the heat on the stove top to medium-high so the ramen is extra hot when its time to eat!
In a large pot of heavily salted boiling water, (the fresh noodles needs heavily salted water), cook noodles stirring occasionally, until almost al dente -fresh noodles only need 1 to 2 minutes in boiling water, and it will finish cooking completely in the ramen.
Prepare some serving bowls. First add ladlefuls of the ramen broth, next add your noodles (depending on how many you want), your steamed greens, your eggs and nori. Sprinkle ramen spring onions, sliced onion and drizzle over some more chilli oil if you would like. Eat immediately and enjoy!
Ramen will be good for up to 3 days stored in the fridge in an airtight container. Chilli oil can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 months, I would recommend using a glass jar with a lid.
Omit the soft boiled eggs and egg noodles if you would like this ramen to be vegan. You can make your own vegan noodles (there are plenty of great recipes out there) or you can buy some from a supermarket.
Deepen the flavour > simmer your ramen broth for up to 8 hours! It tastes amazing! Trust me, its beyond worth it!