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Momofuku Hardcover – October 27, 2009
"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Learn more
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From Momofuku: Ginger Scallion Noodles and Ginger Scallion Sauce
Our ginger scallion noodles are an homage to/out-and-out rip-off of one of the greatest dishes in New York City: the $4.95 plate of ginger scallion noodles at Great New York Noodletown down on the Bowery in Chinatown.
Ginger scallion sauce is one of the greatest sauces or condiments ever. Ever. It’s definitely a mother sauce at Momofuku, something that we use over and over and over again. If you have ginger scallion sauce in the fridge, you will never go hungry: stir 6 tablespoons into a bowl of hot noodles--lo mein, rice noodles, Shanghai thick noodles--and you’re in business. Or serve over a bowl of rice topped with a fried egg. Or with grilled meat or any kind of seafood. Or almost anything.
At Noodle Bar, we add a few vegetables to the Noodletown dish to appease the vegetarians, add a little sherry vinegar to the sauce to cut the fat, and leave off the squirt of hoisin sauce that Noodletown finishes the noodles with. (Not because it’s a bad idea or anything, just that we’ve got hoisin in our pork buns, and too much hoisin in a meal can be too much of a good thing. Feel free to add it back.)
The dish goes something like this: boil 6 ounces of ramen noodles, drain, toss with 6 tablespoons Ginger Scallion Sauce (below); top the bowl with 1/4 cup each of Bamboo Shoots (page 54 of Momofuku); Quick-Pickled Cucumbers (page 65 of Momofuku); pan-roasted cauliflower (a little oil in a hot wide pan, 8 or so minutes over high heat, stirring occasionally, until the florets are dotted with brown and tender all the way through; season with salt); a pile of sliced scallions; and a sheet of toasted nori. But that’s because we’ve always got all that stuff on hand. Improvise to your needs, but know that you need ginger scallion sauce on your noodles, in your fridge, and in your life. For real.-- David Chang
- 2 1/2 cups thinly sliced scallions (greens and whites; from 1 to 2 large bunches)
- 1/2 cup finely minced peeled fresh ginger
- 1/4 cup grapeseed or other neutral oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons usukuchi (light soy sauce)
- 3/4 teaspoon sherry vinegar
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
(Makes about three cups)
Mix together the scallions, ginger, oil, soy, vinegar, and salt in a bowl. Taste and check for salt, adding more if needed. Though it’s best after 15 or 20 minutes of sitting, ginger scallion sauce is good from the minute it’s stirred together up to a day or two in the fridge. Use as directed, or apply as needed.
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Chang, master restaurateur and chef, and Meehan, a New York Times food writer, join forces in this stellar collection of recipes from Chang's restaurants—Momofuku, Ssäm Bar and Ko. Chang is a man possessed with a deep love of ramen and a clear passion for food. This book pays tribute to the humble noodle, which Chang has elevated to a near art form, and the wide array of cuisine he serves. Filled with 150 gorgeous, full-color photos and an engrossing narrative, this book is a treat for the eye, mind and palate. Chang's special touches are seen in every dish. Chicken wings are cooked with bacon in rendered pork or duck fat, and pan-roasted asparagus are adorned with poached eggs and miso butter. Fried (or roasted) cauliflower is drizzled with fish sauce vinaigrette, and roasted New Jersey diver scallops are served with kohlrabi puree and iwa nori. Of course, recipes for noodles abound, including Momofuku ramen, ginger scallion noodles, and Alkaline Noodles. Other staples include ramen broth, ramen toppings, and rice with miso soup. Be forewarned: Chang gears the cookbook to only the most experienced of cooks, with many dishes requiring several steps. Nevertheless, Chang presents a collection both stunning and engaging. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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A lot of the recipes call for secondary recipes, but some of them are pretty quick.
1) Ginger Scallion Noodles with Pan Roasted Cauliflower, Bamboo Shoots, Quick Cucumber Pickles, and Nori – p57. The Ginger Scallion Noodles take about 5 minutes to pull together the sauce, then it needs to sit for 20 minutes and fresh noodles only boil for about 3 minutes. The Pan Roasted Cauliflower takes about 10 minutes. The Bamboo Shoots take 5 minutes, then simmer for 30. And the Quick Cucumber Pickles take 5 and sit for 20. The Nori just gets plated. Altogether, it took about 40 minutes and it was a divine dinner that tasted really special.
2) Roasted Mushroom Salad over Braised Pistachios with Pickled Sunchokes and Radishes - – p57-58. So delicious and pretty!
3) Momofuku Ramen – p39. Okay, this one’s a time investment, but oh so worth it! My gosh – the ramen broth is so delicious that it silenced our table. The pork belly is to die for! And my youngest thinks the fish cakes look like something out of Hello Kitty, so she was on board before she even tried it. There are seven sub-recipes to pull it together: Ramen broth – p40, Tare – p42, Pork belly – p50, Pork shoulder – p51, Bamboo shoots, Seasonal vegetable (collard greens) – p54, and Slow poached egg – p52.
I can't wait to try the other recipes.
If you see ingredients listed that you don't recognize, it'll save you time shopping to look them up online so you'll have a better idea what it is and what section of the store you might be looking in.
This is a miraculous and seldom seen combination of a cookbook and (auto)biography of a chef and a restaurant. I think many cookbooks try to do both well and often deliver a book with a cheap version of each. In Momofuku, Chang and Meehan somehow are able to tell the tale of Chang's culinary life while intertwining it with the recipes and techniques. When you are ready to get down to the real reason you bought the book - the recipes - you'll be glad they were written for a cook in mind. The ingredients are laid out cleanly and the steps are well written and easy to follow. I've made the quick pickles, 48 hour short ribs, Korean fried chicken, pickled mustard seeds, Brussels sprouts etc. The flavors are amazing and what's great is many of the mini dishes (ie pickles) are easy stored and usable in other dishes.
I would highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in modern Asian cooking and is up for making dishes a little bit more complicated than the norm but with great payoffs.
This book is great for the story that Chang tells. Its not just a recipe book but describes his insecurities of starting a restaurant as well as journey to building an empire.
I thought the recipes were written very well. There are some things that are a little bit difficult to understand. I still don't understand his process of cold smoking indoors. But generally the recipes are written very well and usually helps you understand why a particular process or ingredient is used. Not always. I'm still not sure why he decided to use usukuchi over regular soy sauce. I'm guessing its due to the saltiness of the soy sauce and/or the color. I'm sure there is another characteristic that he likes as well.
Some of the recipes are deceptively simple! His pork belly recipe literally have only 3 ingredients: pork belly, sugar and salt. The result is mind glowingly good. This book will make you feel and look like a genius!
I haven't made a batch of ramen from this book… yet! But it can be something that will take a home cook a full day or a few days to make.
Some of the ingredients can be a little hard to find. I had a hard time finding the soy sauce he uses (usukuchi). I've found it at one of the Korean grocery stores, but the ingredient was expired. I'm not sure if that matters very much with soy sauce, but I didn't buy it. I don't like expired ingredients. I used the soy sauce that I usually use. I'm not sure what effect that had on the dish. However, the tare turned out very good. The scallions and ginger sauce was very pungent. But the recipe calls for outrageous amounts of ginger and scallions. I'm not sure what effect my substitute ingredients had on the recipe, but I would like to try and find out.
This book is great if you are wanting experience some of Momofuku without going to NYC.