Ravenous for Ramen: What makes for a perfect bowl?
Vancouver "Film Feast" celebrates the Japanese noodle
Tampopo is a 1985 Japanese film that celebrates the joy of eating ramen. And tonight, it will be screened at the Lost + Found Cafe in Vancouver.
But the movie is not the only thing on the menu. So is a special duck ramen concocted by Winner Winner, a group of three local chefs who brought Singaporean chicken rice to the Vancouver Chinatown Market last summer.
The Early Edition's Elaine Chau spoke to one of the chefs, Alain Chow, about what makes a perfect bowl of ramen. It turns out that his own love for the soupy noodles comes from watching Tampopo.
There should be a warming sensation that goes from your lips, over your tongue, hitting the palate, going down your throat and into your stomach- Chef Alain Chow on how to enjoy ramen.
"A perfect bowl of ramen to me, would be obviously something that's very very hot. Chewy, bouncy noodles from the alkaline...it has to be hot and salty."
The heart and soul of ramen is in fresh noodles, and a broth that's had the chance to simmer for a long time.
Alain says, "the broth should be rich, high in salinity, warming and pungent in some way. There should be a warming sensation that goes from your lips, over your tongue, hitting the palate, going down your throat and into your stomach....that to me, is what a good ramen broth should do.
Recipe for Alain's ramen broth:
454 g pork bones
454 g chicken bones
1 kg duck bones
1 piece Japanese leek
1 piece onion
12 piece garlic cloves
15 g dried squid
15 g dried anchovy, head and guts removed
15 g katsuoboshi (dried, fermented, and smoked skipjack tuna)
20 g kombu (kelp)
30 g ginger
454 g duck skin, roasted
1. Cover bones with cold water and bring to boil. Once it boils, strain and rinse bones.
2. Wash pot clean; place bones back into pot and add the rest of ingredients except the katsuoboshi and duck skin.
3. Cover with cold water and bring up to 90° C and then turn down heat and simmer for six hours. Keep skimming!
4. After five hours, place duck skin in stock. After six hours total (one hour with duck skin), take broth off heat and place katsuoboshi in stock and let sit for 20 minutes.
5. Strain, and serve!