When one of my daughters visited Japan, she brought home a package of pink noodles (ume somen). The noodles get their lovely color from plums and they have a delicately sweet flavor. The noodles are hard to find in the US, but if you come across them, do yourself a favor and grab several packages. If you can't find them, you can make the same tasty dish by substituting white somen or buckwheat soba noodles.
If you're interested in seeing how these noodles are traditionally used, check out my recipe for cold ume somen with spicy dressing.
For this recipe we'll need the noodles, edamame (soy beans), instant dashi granules, shredded crab meat, salt, and scallions.
Cook the noodles in boiling salted water - they don't take very long to cook so keep a close eye on them. 3-5 minutes is all it takes.
Drain and rinse to stop the cooking process.
Although the leftover cooking water is a lovely pink color, discard it and fill the same pan with 4 cups of fresh cold water.
Add instant dashi granules to taste - they are VERY STRONG so start with 1/4 teaspoon and add more if needed.
Stir and bring to a simmer.
Ladle hot dashi broth into bowls and divide remaining ingredients between the bowls.
Hot Ume Somen Noodle Bowls
makes 2 servings
8 ounces Ume Somen (plum noodles) or other noodles
1 teaspoon kosher salt
instant dashi granules
8 crab sticks, shredded
1 cup cooked, shelled edamame
2 scallions, thinly sliced
In a large pot, 8 cups of water to a boil; add salt and stir to dissolve.
Cook noodles in boiling water, stirring frequently, for 3-5 minutes until soft, but not mushy.
Drain noodles and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process; set aside
Discard the water used to cook the noodles.
In the same large pot, bring 4 cups of water to a boil.
Add instant dashi granules to taste (I start with about 1/4 teaspoon or so).
Ladel hot dashi into soup bowls.
Add noodles, crab, and edamame to the bowls; sprinkle with sliced scallions.