hiyashi chuka (japanese cold noodle salad)
Hiyashi Chuka is a Japanese cold noodle salad which is only available in summers. In the past I did not really like it, I always ended up choosing a bowl of hot ramen. However yesterday, we had 31ºC in Basel, and it was not common to have air conditioning like as in Hong Kong. Therefore it made me think of making this cold noodle at home to chill out a bit. It also serves as a great fitness meal. I had all ingredients I needed at home and did not even need to go to the supermarket. It is very easy and quick to prepare so I went swimming in the afternoon to burn some calories and get ready for summer.
To make this cold noodle, it is very flexible, you can choose any vegetables you like, the objective is to combine different colors of toppings (see below for suggestions) to create a colorful dish, so feel free to use your imagination and create your own. You can just skip the meat if you are vegetarian or if you feel like meat-free one of these days.
My recipe is inspired by the one I found in Wikia, thanks to the author for sharing this.
Serves 2-3 (depending on your appetite)
- 2 package boiled and drained ramen noodles (see picture)
Toppings (choose as many as you desire):
- sweet corn or thin strips of pan fried egg
- thinly sliced cucumbers
- grated or julienned carrots
- handful bean sprouts, boil for 1 minute and drain
- handful pak choi, boiled & cut into thin strips
- tomatoes, cut into thin strips
- Choose one:
- ham, cut into thin strips) or
- boiled chicken breast, hand teared into strips or
- cooked prawns (I have used Louisiana peeled shrimps this time bought from ALDI) or
- crab sticks
Sesame dressing :
- 3/4 cup water
- 4 tablespoons brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons ground sesame seeds
- 6 tbsp sesame paste chinese sesame paste or tahini
- 1 tsp hoisin sauce
- 2 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 clove garlic, crushed (optional)
- 1 tsp fresh grated ginger (optional, see notes below)
- Prepare the toppings as described above and set aside.
- Boil the noodles, rinse in cold water to avoid over cook it as well as chill the noodles and drain to remove excess water.
- Mix well the seasonings for the sesame dressing in a bowl, make sure the sesame paste is well blended into the rest of the seasonings.
- Divide the noodles into 2-3 flat bowls. Place the toppings on top of the noodles.
- Serve at room temperature. Pour some dressing on the noodle just before eating.