No one who lives in DC is actually from here. “Home” is always a word for another state, another city, another place – even if that’s somewhere in the DMV area (so, I admit I don’t think Fairfax counts as DC). Somehow, almost 14 years have passed since I first moved here, and when I talk about going home, I always mean Boston.
However, there are some signs that my son will mean “DC” when he talks about home. Like the fact that we just bought a house here. (Side note: Yea, so that happened, and it was terrifying.) And he owns more DC-onesies than can fit in his chest of drawers. And most importantly, the local ramen guy knows his parents, and always manages to squeeze them in ahead of the long line. Thanks, Tony.
Slow Cooker Ramen, inspired by Cooking Light
- canola or olive oil
- 2 pounds pork roast or loin
- salt, pepper
- crushed red pepper
- 2 onions, peeled and halved horizontally
- 8 cups chicken stock (can also use some water instead)
- 1/4 cup soy sauce, divided
- 2 containers shiitake mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- about 2 inches of fresh ginger, sliced thinly
- 1 package fresh udon noodles
- one egg per servings planned (i.e., one egg per bowl)
- 1/2 bunch scallions, sliced
- a handful of sesame seeds
- optional – 1 sheet nori, cut into very thin strips; 1 cup or so corn kernels
1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add oil to pan. Season the pork with salt and pepper, and then add pork to the pan and sear on all sides. Place in the slow cooker.
2. Increase the heat of the skillet and add onions, cut side down. Cook until charred, and then transfer to slow cooker. Add the stock and about two tablespoons of soy sauce to the slow cooker. Shake some red pepper in there for heat. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and add those to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours.
3. Remove pork from cooker and let rest while you thinly slice the mushroom caps. Strain the mushroom caps from the brother. Add 2 tablespoons soy sauce, mushroom caps, sesame oil, and ginger to slow cooker. Cook on high for 20 minutes. Add noodles and corn to slow cooker; cook 5 minutes.
4. As the noodles cook, poach an egg or two to serve. Serve with the soup, sprinkle with sesame seeds, scallions, and nori, if using.
No one will be replacing Sakuramen anytime soon, but goodness this was good.