This Japanese recipe combines traditional suimono – clear soup – as the base stock for a delicious Japanese noodle soup using juuwari soba – 100% buckwheat noodles – and oven roasted duck breast.
- 800ml dashi
- 400ml water
- 3 dried shiitake mushrooms – medium size
- 1 tablespoon quality shoyu (Japanese soy sauce)
- 1½ tablespoons mirin
- 2 duck breasts
- 4 quails eggs (can substitute with one duck or chicken egg semi hard-boiled and peeled)
- Finely sliced negi – shallots
- 150g juuwari soba (100% buckwheat noodles)
Preparation time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 80 mins
For the suimono
- Soak whole dried shiitake in water overnight.
- Remove the shiitake from the water and slice finely. Keep the soaked shiitake water for use later.
- Add dashi, half of the water from the shiitake and sliced mushrooms to a pot. Bring to a simmer.
- Add shoyu and mirin as directed and taste for balance. Adjust the flavours to your liking by adding more mirin, shoyu and salt. Remember shoyu also has a salt content so adjust the flavour in small doses.
For the duck breast
- Preheat oven to 140°c.
- Break down the whole duck leaving the breasts attached to the breastbone. Use a boning knife if you have one. On a baking tray, place duck breasts on a raft of negi (the stem close to the root) and sprinkle liberally with sea salt.
- Place duck in the oven and roast for 40-50 minutes or until just pink on the bone. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- Take the two breasts off the bone and place skin side down in a skillet on low/med heat. Let cook until the fat has melted away (approx 15 minutes) and the skin is crisp. Remove from the heat and let rest for 5 minutes.
- Slice duck breast into ~1cm thick slices.
- Preheat noodle bowls with hot water or by placing in the oven.
- Cook the soba as per packet instructions and wash in cold water.
- To bowls, add cooled noodles, eggs (cut in half) before pouring in the hot soup.
- Place sliced duck breast and negi on top of soup and serve immediately.
- Serve with ichimi – Japanese chilli powder – on the side
- Can’t find shiitake mushrooms? Try dried porcini.
- Not all soba noodles are created equal. There are many noodles on the market that carry the moniker “soba” but most are a blend of up to 50% wheat flour mixed with buckwheat. Always try to buy 100% buckwheat soba noodles – juuwari soba – as the health benefits are only surpassed by the superior taste and texture. Buckwheat is high in protein, B1, B2, Rutin, amino acids and minerals.