Easy Stock Spicy Chicken Miso Ramen

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Over the holidays, my brother-in-law made tonkotsu ramen completely from scratch–pork bones and lard chunks and chashu and all–and it was a ten-hour masterpiece made for a meat-lover. I’ll be the first to admit that the broth was delicious, and after returning home I absolutely wanted to try it for myself… with a few adjustments. As many of you may know, I was “officially” a vegetarian from 2008 to 2017 (when I met my boyfriend, a lifelong carnivore), and my parents still tell stories about Baby Em refusing to swallow beef, pork, lamb… any meat other than McDonald’s Chicken Selects even before I could form proper sentences. What can I say? I just think it tastes odd no matter how you dress it up, and that still holds true after twenty-three years. So, my quest to find a somewhat authentic ramen recipe naturally went down the path of a non-bone-based broth, and I eventually settled on miso. 

As a bit of a forward, ramen is traditionally made up of three to four parts, depending on the type: broth (or stock), tare (the flavor base at the bottom of the bowl), flavored oil (optional), and noodles/garnish (including meats). I used all four categories to make this recipe, and that required some specialty ingredients. Because I don’t have a proper Japanese grocer anywhere near me, I ordered almost everything non-perishable on Amazon in borderline-obscene quantities for about $40. While that might seem like a huge upfront cost, I now have enough ingredients to make this recipe (and many, many other Asian dishes) a dozen times or more. In many ways, it was an investment in eating something better than haphazard teriyaki stir-fry. 

This recipe makes 5-6 servings, depending on the size of your bowl. 

Stock Ingredients:

  • 2 whole bulbs garlic
  • 1 medium white onion
  • 1 medium ginger root
  • 2 whole carrots
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1/3 cup dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 6 strips kombu seaweed
  • 5 cups water
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup dry sake
  • 2-3 chicken breasts

Chili Oil Ingredients:

NOTE: You can use store-bought chili oil instead of making your own. I made mine so that I could use the leftover seasoning to flavor my chicken, but it’s totally up to you.

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp gochugaru
  • 3 tbsp bonito flakes/katsuobushi

Tare Ingredients:

  • ½ cup white miso paste
  • 2 tbsp gochujang
  • ½ cup dry sake
  • ½ cup mirin

Noodles/Garnishes:

  • 2-3 cups ramen noodles
  • 1/8 cup chopped green onions (per serving)
  • ¼ cup kimchi (per serving)
  • 1 soft-boiled ramen egg (per serving)

Directions:

  1. In the biggest stock pot you own, add water, chicken stock, kombu, shiitake mushrooms, green onions (washed and ripped in half so you have a shorter bunch that will fit in your pot), carrots (washed, peeled, and cut in half so they will fit in your pot), ginger (sliced lengthwise into 3-4 pieces with the flesh showing), garlic bulbs (sliced in half so each individual clove is cut down the middle), and onion (peeled and sliced in half).
  2. Bring stock to boil, cover, and reduce heat to simmer for 1 hour.
  3. Add whole chicken breasts and push to the bottom of the pot. Add ½ cup sake (if desired). Cover and continue simmering for an additional 20-25 minutes, depending on the size/quantity of chicken.
  4. In a small sauce pot combine ½ cup olive oil, 1 tbsp minced ginger, 1 tbsp minced garlic, 2 tbsp gochugaru (or red pepper flakes), and 3 tbsp (or 1 packet) katsuobushi. 
  5. Lightly simmer chili oil on low/medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let sit until it cools. 
  6. In a slightly larger sauce pot, add ½ cup white miso, 2 tbsp gochujang (or sriracha), ½ cup sake (if desired), ½ cup mirin (or sugar/vinegar mixture). Whisk until smooth.
  7. Bring tare to boil and then reduce to medium-low heat for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Remove from heat and let sit until it cools.
  8. Reduce broth to low heat.
  9. Remove chicken breasts and shiitake mushrooms (Note: only remove if you want to eat them; eating the mushrooms is optional) from the broth and set aside in a separate bowl to cool. 
  10. Remove all other solid ingredients (kombu, carrots, onions, garlic, etc.) and throw away. You may need to use a strainer to remove smaller bits of garlic peel or stray onions rings, but if it doesn’t bother you don’t worry about it. We’re not serving this to paying customers. (Note: if you don’t plan on eating the shiitake mushrooms, toss them in the trash with the other stock ingredients.)
  11. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred the breasts with your hands (or two forks) until you have nice bite-sized strips. (Note: and slice the mushrooms if you’re going to eat them.)
  12. In a small bowl, strain the chili oil with cheese cloth or mesh strainer to remove all chili flakes/katsuobushi flakes/etc. Squeeze to extract all extra oil. Set aside clear oil to be served and reserve “chunks”.
  13. Add the strained chili flakes/katsuobusi flakes/etc. “chunks” to your shredded chicken/shiitake and mix until coated.
  14. Cook noodles according to package directions. (Note: if using fresh ramen noodles, add to boiling water and cook for no more than 2 minutes.)
  15. When you’re ready to serve, add 1/3 cup tare, 1 – 1 ½ tbsp chili oil, 1 ½ – 2 cups hot broth to a bowl. Stir gently to combine. Add noodles and coat with broth. Garnish with chicken/shiitake, kimchi, chopped green onion, and soft-boiled ramen egg. Eat and enjoy!

When storing leftovers, you can either assemble “bowls” of ramen in Tupperware/mason jar to reheat later, or keep each part separate for future use. If stored together, each “bowl” keeps for 24 hours and must be reheated by bringing to boil in a small pot (like you would for a regular can of soup). We tried microwaving it and that didn’t work well. Just trust me.

If stored separately, the oil will keep for 6 months (covered), the tare will keep for 2 weeks (covered), the stock will keep for 4 days (covered) in the fridge OR 2 months (covered) in the freezer, frozen, and the noodles will keep 3 days (covered).

Disclaimer: This recipe was inspired by Seonkyoung Longest’s “Spicy Chicken Miso Ramen” YouTube video. I changed a few things (amounts, ingredients, and a few additions) and left several other things out (ingredients I either forgot or just didn’t add) both based on what I could/couldn’t find and my own tastes. All of her recipes are awesome! Please go watch her videos!

Easy Stock Spicy Chicken Miso Ramen

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Japanese

Ingredients

Stock Ingredients:

  • 2 bulbs garlic whole
  • 1 white onion medium
  • 1 ginger root medium
  • 2 carrots whole
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • cup dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 6 strips kombu seaweed
  • 5 cups water
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup dry sake
  • 2-3 chicken breasts

Chili Oil Ingredients:

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp gochugaru
  • 3 tbsp bonito flakes/katsuobushi

Tare Ingredients:

  • ½ cup white miso paste
  • 2 tbsp gochujang
  • ½ cup dry sake optional
  • ½ cup mirin

Noodles/Garnishes:

  • 2-3 cups ramen noodles
  • 1/8 cup chopped green onions per serving
  • ¼ cup kimchi per serving
  • 1 soft-boiled ramen egg per serving

Instructions

  • In the biggest stock pot you own, add water, chicken stock, kombu, shiitake mushrooms, green onions (washed and ripped in half so you have a shorter bunch that will fit in your pot), carrots (washed, peeled, and cut in half so they will fit in your pot), ginger (sliced lengthwise into 3-4 pieces with the flesh showing), garlic bulbs (sliced in half so each individual clove is cut down the middle), and onion (peeled and sliced in half).
  • Bring stock to boil, cover, and reduce heat to simmer for 1 hour.
  • Add whole chicken breasts and push to the bottom of the pot. Add ½ cup sake (if desired). Cover and continue simmering for an additional 20-25 minutes, depending on the size/quantity of chicken.
  • In a small sauce pot combine ½ cup olive oil, 1 tbsp minced ginger, 1 tbsp minced garlic, 2 tbsp gochugaru (or red pepper flakes), and 3 tbsp (or 1 packet) katsuobushi.
  • Lightly simmer chili oil on low/medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let sit until it cools.
  • In a slightly larger sauce pot, add ½ cup white miso, 2 tbsp gochujang (or sriracha), ½ cup sake (if desired), ½ cup mirin (or sugar/vinegar mixture). Whisk until smooth.
  • Bring tare to boil and then reduce to medium-low heat for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Remove from heat and let sit until it cools.
  • Reduce broth to low heat.
  • Remove chicken breasts and shiitake mushrooms* from the broth and set aside in a separate bowl to cool.
  • Remove all other solid ingredients (kombu, carrots, onions, garlic, etc.) and throw away. You may need to use a strainer to remove smaller bits of garlic peel or stray onions rings, but if it doesn’t bother you don’t worry about it. We’re not serving this to paying customers.**
  • When the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred the breasts with your hands (or two forks) until you have nice bite-sized strips.***
  • In a small bowl, strain the chili oil with cheese cloth or mesh strainer to remove all chili flakes/katsuobushi flakes/etc. Squeeze to extract all extra oil. Set aside clear oil to be served and reserve “chunks”.
  • Add the strained chili flakes/katsuobusi flakes/etc. “chunks” to your shredded chicken/shiitake and mix until coated.
  • Cook noodles according to package directions.****
  • When you’re ready to serve, add 1/3 cup tare, 1 – 1 ½ tbsp chili oil, 1 ½ – 2 cups hot broth to a bowl. Stir gently to combine. Add noodles and coat with broth. Garnish with chicken/shiitake, kimchi, chopped green onion, and soft-boiled ramen egg. Eat and enjoy!

Notes

  • *Only remove if you want to eat them; eating the mushrooms is optional
  • **If you don’t plan on eating the shiitake mushrooms, toss them in the trash with the other stock ingredients.
  • ***And slice the mushrooms if you’re going to eat them.
  • **** If using fresh ramen noodles, add to boiling water and cook for no more than 2 minutes.
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