Hiyamugi noodles are similar to somen and are usually served cold with a dashi and soy dressing, some shiso and very little else. Here we've thrown in some pickles. In this instance, we've used organic ginger because it's so tender. You'll need to begin this recipe two weeks ahead if you're making the pickles or you could buy good-quality pickles from a Japanese grocer.
- 200 gm hiyamugi noodles (see note)
- To serve: finely chopped spring onion and shiso leaves (see note)
- 1 daikon, halved lengthways
- 30 gm sea salt flakes
- 150 gm rice bran flour (see note)
- 1 tbsp each caster and brown sugar
- 3 dried long red chillies
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 300 gm assorted firm Asian mushrooms, such as shiitake, wood ear and black fungus
- 185 ml (¾ cup) light soy sauce
- 185 ml (¾ cup) rice wine vinegar
- 165 gm (¾ cup) caster sugar
- 60 ml (¼ cup) rice wine vinegar
- 55 gm (¼ cup) caster sugar
- 50 gm (10cm piece) organic ginger, very thinly sliced
- 5 cm piece kombu (see note)
- 25 gm dried bonito flakes (see note)
- 125 ml (½ cup) mirin
- 125 ml (½ cup) shoyu (see note)
- 1For pickled daikon, combine daikon and salt in a bowl and mix well to coat. Add remaining ingredients and 500ml water, transfer to a sealable plastic bag, remove excess air, place on a tray and refrigerate for at least 2 weeks before using. Rinse daikon under cold running water and thinly slice before serving. Daikon will keep refrigerated indefinitely.
- 2For pickled mushrooms, combine mushrooms and 500ml hot water in a bowl. Stand until tender (10-15 minutes), then drain, reserving 250ml liquid. Combine remaining ingredients in a saucepan with reserved liquid and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour over mushrooms and cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until lightly pickled (2-4 days). Pickled mushrooms will keep for 1 month.
- 3For pickled ginger, combine rice wine, sugar, ginger, 1 tsp sea salt and 125ml water in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat and stand overnight at room temperature to pickle. Pickled ginger will keep for 1 month.
- 4For dipping sauce, combine kombu, bonito flakes and 310ml water in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat. Discard kombu, then cool to room temperature, strain through a fine sieve into a clean pan. Add remaining ingredients and bring to the boil, then cool to room temperature and refrigerate until chilled (20-30 minutes).
- 5Meanwhile, cook hiyamugi in boiling water until tender (2-4 minutes), drain, refresh in iced water and drain again. Serve noodles with spring onion, shiso, pickles and dipping sauce to the side.
Note Hiyamugi are thin wheat-based noodles available from Japanese grocers. If unavailable, substitute somen or soba. Shiso, also known as perilla, is a peppery flavoured herb available from Japanese grocers or select greengrocers. Rice bran flour, kombu and bonito flakes are all available from Japanese grocers. Shoyu is a type of Japanese soy sauce, available from Japanese grocers. If unavailable, substitute light soy sauce.