We've been experiencing a hotter-than-usual summer out here in northern Arizona, so when I came across this cold-noodle recipe with lobster and oyster mushrooms, I knew it was just what I needed.
I made this dish on a Monday evening, and Monday's are always hectic for me. At the end of Mondays, I don't usually want to spend the evening in the kitchen working on any complicated recipe. I'll cook, for sure, but it has to be something that's simple, yet rewarding. Lobster, mushrooms, dashi broth and somen noodles? Yes, please, and pass the chopsticks.
I think what I love most about Japanese cooking is that so much of it focuses on simple techniques and limited ingredients, but those techniques must be taken seriously and the ingredients must really shine. After a crazy Monday, I can't tell you how much I enjoyed making, shooting, then eating this elegantly simple dish on my back porch with a glass of sauvignon blanc.
I'm done chattering now. I'll share some pics and below is the recipe, which I changed up just slightly. I did not have Tsuyu, which is a sauce often used in noddle dishes. Instead, I simply grabbed some dashi-broth from the cupboard and used that instead. I think dashi, which is made with kombu (edible dried kelp) and kezurikatsuro (shavings of katsuobushi - preserved, fermented bonito) and smells and tastes a little like the ocean, was a perfect pairing with the lobster. Additionally, after boiling the lobster tail, I removed it from the shell and then lightly grilled it, along with the mushrooms, in a little bit of butter. That brief kiss of fire and melted butter on the grill, I feel, really put this dish over the top. I really hope you'll try this one!
Lobster & Mushroom Somen
Adapted from Eat A Duck I Must
Lobster meat from the knuckles and body (I only had access to tails, so I used one large tail)
2 bundles somen
Tsuyu - or - Dashi broth
Roasted sesame seeds
- Clean and boil the lobster for about 10mins in boiling water
- Drain the lobster and let it cool until it is not too hot to handle
- Remove the meat from the knuckles and abdomen
- In a separate pot, boil the somen in boiling water until it is cooked
- Drain the noodle and place it in an ice/water bath
- Add water to a bowl (enough for 2 servings) then slowly add the tsuyu to taste. Tsuyu comes in concentrated form, you can usually follow the proportion written on the bottle. If you are using a dashi-broth, follow the directions on the package ... or better yet, make David Chang's Bacon Dashi (you can find it in his Momofuku book ;))
- Brush the mushrooms with butter and sprinkle with kosher salt
- Grill the mushroom over medium-high heat for several minutes and remove
- Brush the lobster tail with butter and grill for a minute or two on each side. Remove, cool and slice
- Drain the cold noodles and place it in the serving bowl
- Add the lobster meat and grilled mushroom on top
- Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and chopped green onions
- When ready to serve, pour the soup onto the noodles and ENJOY!