Quick and easy to prepare, this recipe traditionally calls for Japanese wheat noodles called somen, but soba or ramen noodles will work equally well. The dressing, made with Korean fermented chilli paste and chilli powder, forms the foundation of this dish, so taste the mix to ensure it’s punchy and well-balanced.
- 2 eggs at room temperature
- 180 g somen noodles (see Note)
- ½ cup kimchi (see Note), finely sliced
- ½ bunch radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 small carrot, cut into match sticks or coarsely grated
- 1 Lebanese cucumber, seeds removed, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted, plus extra to serve
- 1 small cloved garlic, sliced
- 1½ tbsp rice vinegar
- 1½ tbsp kochujang (Korean red chilli paste) (see Note)
- 1 tsp kochugaru (Korean chilli powder) (see Note)
- 1 tbsp kimchi liquid (reserved from above)
- 1 tbsp water
- 3 tsp soy sauce
- 3 tsp honey
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
To make the dressing, grind the sesame seeds in a mortar and pestle until smooth. Add the garlic and a pinch of salt and grind until combined. Add the remaining ingredients and mix to combine. Season with salt and adjust balance with more vinegar, soy or chilli paste if necessary. It should quite loose, if not add a little extra water to thin out.
Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add the eggs and cook for 5½ minutes for a soft centre. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl of cold water for 1 minutes. Peel. Add the noodles to the boiling water and according to packet directions. Drain, rinse in cold water and drain again.
Toss the noodles and dressing together. Divide between plates and top with the remaining vegetables and egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
• Somen, soba and ramen noodles are all available in most supermarkets and in Japanese and Asian food stores.
• Kimchi is fermented, spicy cabbage. You’ll find it in the refrigerated section of Asian food stores and some supermarkets.
• Kochujang is Korean fermented red chilli paste and Kochugaru is Korean chilli powder. Both are available from Korean and Asian grocers.
• If the chilli paste and powder are unavailable, substitute them both with 3 teaspoons of hot paprika and ¼–½ teaspoon cayenne pepper. Adjust the balance with vinegar, soy and honey.
Photography by Benito Martin. Styling by Lynsey Fryers. Food preparation by Suresh Watson.
Heikke place mat from Country Road. Pebble dipping bowl from mud. Aria dinner plate from Papaya.