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Sesame Ramen with Caramelized Pork

by Dominque Woolf from Dominique’s Kitchen: Easy Everyday Asia-Inspired Food (Penguin Michael Joseph)

Photography: Richard Clatworthy


Being half Thai I eat more than my fair share of noodles – there’s nothing better than a bowl of warming ramen to lift the spirits and fly you off to a different continent. This recipe uses Thai red curry paste and tahini to create a spicy, rich, nutty broth. It might sound strange, but I promise it works! Sweet and savoury caramelized pork takes this dish to a whole other level.


Note: While this recipe has a number of elements, none of them are complicated, and the end result is undoubtedly worth the effort! You can substitute the pork with prawns, leftover chicken or more veg, if you wish.



Preparation time: 25 mins

Cooking time: 25 mins


Serves 2 generously


Ingredients


FOR THE PASTE

6 tablespoons tahini

1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste

2½ tablespoon soft brown sugar

2 tablespoons light soy sauce

1 tablespoon grated ginger, (approx. 6cm)


FOR THE PORK

2 spring onions, finely sliced

1 teaspoon grated ginger, (approx. 2cm)

1 clove of garlic, crushed

1 red chilli, finely sliced

200g pork mince , preferably 15–20% fat content

2½ tablespoons honey

1½ tablespoons fish sauce


FOR THE NOODLES

2 large eggs

800ml chicken stock

100g tenderstem broccoli, cut into 5cm pieces

2 portions of ramen or medium egg or wheat noodles

1 carrot, shredded with a julienne peeler or cut into matchsticks

1 spring onion, finely sliced



Method


Whisk the paste ingredients together and divide between two serving bowls. Cook the noodles according to instructions then rinse well under cold water. Set aside.


Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the spring onions, ginger, garlic and chilli, and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the pork, turn up to medium-high and fry for 4–5 minutes, breaking up the meat as you go, until browned and starting to dry out. Mix in the honey and fish sauce and stir-fry for a further couple of minutes. Turn off the heat. Set aside.



Fill a small saucepan with boiling water and bring to the boil over a medium heat. Add the eggs and cook for 6 minutes, then immediately remove and run under cold water for a minute or so. Peel and cut in half.


Bring the stock to the boil in a large pan. Add the broccoli and cook for 2–3 minutes, until just done. Remove and set aside. Add the cooked noodles and turn down the heat – you want them to reheat, not cook. Add a ladle of stock to each serving bowl and whisk to combine, then stir in the remaining stock.


Add the noodles, and top with the caramelized pork, the halved soft-boiled eggs, the broccoli and shredded carrot. Garnish with spring onions. Nice with a drizzle of soy or chilli oil.

Above are the drinks Nigel tasted on air, alongside the dish.

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