Tonkotsu Ramen | Basics with Babish

Tonkotsu Ramen | Basics with Babish

July 26, 2019 100 By William Morgan


Hey guys. This week we’re taking a
departure from basic technique and
heading into some more advanced
territory. Homemade tonkotsu ramen… less
an essential skill, and more a right of
passage for the modern home-cook. Sure, it
takes to some odd days to make and sure
you could burn your hands on the
alkaline salt and sure, getting every
elements just right is a constant
barrage of challenges. But, with that
first steamy slurp comes a superlative
sense of accomplishment. Not to mention a truly delicious dinner. Let’s get down to basics….
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Squarespace. Alright folks so far in
previous episodes we’ve covered how to
make tonkotsu ramen broth from scratch
by boiling pork bones and aromatics for
12 hours and we’ve covered how to make
chashu pork belly in our sous vide or at
least we’ve gotten it started. You can
find links to these techniques in this
video’s description let’s get that stuff
out of the way we can soldier on to our
remaining soup supplements. Starting with
some marinated soft-boiled eggs I have
here some soft-boiled eggs which we have
soft-boiled shocked in an ice bath and
peeled and now we’re gonna make a super
simple marinade of equal parts soy sauce
and mirin which is a super flavorful
Japanese cooking wine.Then for each part
soy sauce and mirin we’re going to add
about four parts water then we’re look
for a rubber spatula or spoon and
realize that we had the best mixing tool
in our hand the whole time gently add
the eggs and they’re gonna float but
just make sure that there’s enough
liquid in the bowl to theoretically
cover them I’m going to add a little bit
of extra soy sauce and mirin to make
sure that they’re well covered and then
we’re gonna put them in the fridge
agitating them after about two hours
refrigerating them for a minimum of four
and up to 24. Then, it’s on to the
business of making tare an ultra
flavorful umami packed soup-base. We’re
starting by heating a good squirt of
vegetable oil over medium-high heat and
adding a smattering of dried anchovies
and letting these guys really soak up
the heat for three or four minutes we
want to get them good and seared and we
want a good layer of fond on the bottom
of the pot. This means letting them sit
and stick so take a thematically
inappropriate sip from a martini and let
them sit on the bottom of the pot until
some nice brown stuff forms once it does
it’s time to deglaze using some soy
sauce. We’re gonna add maybe half a cup
to it you can now see was a spitting
hot pan where I let that chill the hell
out before we add a little bit more soy
sauce because we don’t feel like we
added enough, and then an equal part of mirin give
that a stir get it nice and hot before
adding some bonito dried fish flake I
know this mixture sounding pretty fishy
but really it’s just an umami bomb
that’s gonna help set off our tonkatsu
broth. You can see that I’ve taken it off
the heat because I want that bonito to
sort of steep like a fish tea, and then I’m
gonna add a couple tablespoons of saké,
put that back on the heat let the
alcohol boil off, strain, and there we go
we’ve made tare. You can refrigerate this
until ready to use because now it’s time
for the most perilous part of the
process: making homemade ramen noodles. The first step here is to make some
alkaline salt which we’re going to make
by baking baking soda- yes that’s what
I meant to say- at 250 degrees Fahrenheit
for one hour.
This changes the pH balance of our
baking soda and turns it into a mild
skin irritant, so make sure not to touch
it, we’re combining 2 teaspoons of our
baked soda with four ounces plus two
tablespoons of water making sure to
dissolve completely. Then into a large
bowl we are depositing 240 grams of
all-purpose flour to which we are adding
our alkaline water mixture and combining
with a wooden, or other, spoon we want a
shaggy but cohesive ball of dough and as
you can see this is a little bit too dry
so I’m gonna add a little bit of extra
water think pasta dough in terms of
consistency. Once it comes together into
a cohesive but not sticky ball of dough
we’re going to Pat it into a disk, dust
it with bread flour, and cover letting
rest for one half of one hour kind of
just like pasta dough take this time to
go clean up your apron because you’ve
made a mess of yourself and then once
half an hour has elapsed extract the
dough from the bowl and then it’s time
to start rolling out we’re gonna start
by performing a single rudimentary
lamination that is lightly dusted with
flour rolling out and folding into
thirds like a letter, then into thirds
again.. so not quite like a letter but hey,
I’m not gonna judge you for how you fold
your letters. We’re rolling this out just
a little bit wrapping in plastic wrap
and letting rest again for another half
hour. We’re just letting the gluten relax
before we break out the big guns, that’s
right. It’s time to bust out your shiny
new stand mixer pasta roller, you know
that when you got for Christmas. I think
that’s the only way you can actually get
one of these as a Christmas or wedding
gift. Anyway, we’re gonna give this guy
one final lamination before rolling
and cutting them up so let’s give it one
pass on our roller widest setting.
Folding into thirds like a you-know-what
rotating 90 degrees and beginning to
roll out even thinner until we’re at
about a two or three on our pasta press
if the edges are too ragged and it’s
coming apart just go ahead and laminate
it a few more times. This is getting a
little bit too long for individual
noodles so I’m gonna give this a simple
chopp in half as you can see we’re
also giving this an extra dusting of
bread flour before the most satisfying
part of our day running this through the
noodle cutter. Dust with even more bread
flour and twist into little ramen nests
on a bread flour dusted rimmed baking
sheet. At this point these can be
refrigerated or frozen I’m just gonna
cover mine with plastic wrap and
refrigerate because it’s almost ramen
time. Picking up from where we left off
in the sous-vide episode are chashu pork
belly is coming out the water bath and
onto a rack and a rimmed baking sheet
that we are then going to place round
side facing the sky under a broiler
until it emerges deeply browned and
crisp excuse me while I stare at this in
awe for a moment, and then we’re gonna
snip up the string and slice this guy
into slices. Now ideally you want to
chill this overnight so you can get it
nice and firm, and cut super thin slices.
But, I’m really hungry so into some
boiling water go the ramen noodles we’re
not letting those cook for more than
three minutes and I’m gonna test for
doneness after about 90 seconds into the
bottom of a warmed noodle bowl goes a
few tablespoons of our tar a followed by
a few ladlefuls of steaming hot broth
followed by our freshly cooked and
rigorously shook noodles. Dump those guys
into the broth, there we go.
and now it’s time to get all dressed up
with nowhere to go into the back of the
bowl goes one to two slices of our
chashu pork on the side goes a single
sheet of nori or, dried seaweed. Then
we’re slicing in half one of our
beautifully soft-boiled marinated eggs
placing that on to the other side,
handful of scallions optionally and I
like a few pieces of spicy Menma or
fermented bamboo shoots and there you
have it after two days of what I think
you will agree was completely worth it
effort, a steaming bowl of perfection.
You’ve come a long way from that 39
cents a packaged crapy you steeped in
college that I admittedly still eat
from time to time. So grab some
chopsticks, dig in, and prepare to have
your mind
blow and don’t forget to loudly proudly
slurp your noodles to not do so is rude
to the chef which is you… and really
isn’t loving yourself the most important
technique that I could teach you? So I
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