Vegetarian noodle bowl OR the seitan chronicles part II.
BROTH: I wanted a beef-like vegetarian broth. So I started with oil, salt, pepper, and flour in a roux. I added scorched onions chopped fine and let the whole thing start to brown in the bottom of the pan. Basically I’m making fond and letting it almost burn, then scraping it up with some more liquid. Then cook down and repeat.
Along the way I constituted some veggie broth out of some miso and bouillon. I added soy sauce and hot chili peppers. Sauté the onions and fond down and then add fluid, then reducing until goo appears. Repeat to your comfort. I cooked down the base of the broth three or four times.
By the way, when I say scorched onions, I mean it. Onions and ginger were burned on the stove burner.
I took the ginger and peeled it then diced it up. Flame roasted ginger loses a lot of the gingery burn and mellows to a sweet hot flavor. It’s nice.
I added the ginger and some other veggies (carrots and zuccini) to the broth, lots of fluid, soy and veggie broth into the pot. I made a spice sack out of the corner of an old pillow case. (Cinnamon, cardamon seeds, hot chili, a nob of burned ginger, and a little coffee went into the spice sack — basically everything that I worry will overpower the broth). Test the flavor and remember that when you add noodles it will become 25% less salty and hot, so err on the side of spicy!
Start a pot of water boiling for noodles. Once it’s going, I blanched some broccoli. Set aside (broccoli in most soups becomes over-powering. I just want a little bit as a topping for our noodle bowl).
TOPPINGS: I chopped up some raw cabbage, raw bean sprouts, and diced up cilantro (from the garden none-the-less). Stir fried some thinly sliced seitan to be set into the broth. Also I bought a pack of corporate vegetarian egg rolls, baked them in the oven, chopped them into quarters and then tossed on top of the noodle bowl. Don’t forget peanuts, garlic chives and loads of lime to finish.
Once everything is set, cook noodles, strain and then plop into the bottom of the bowl. Ladle on some broth and top with veggies, egg rolls and seasoning.