EASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE OIL)

EASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE SAUCE) #easydinner #ramen #noodles #sarahcopeland #healthydinner

BACK-TO-SCHOOL. Sigh. I cringe at those words when I hear them in ads and get-organized campaigns. Yes, routine is good for us, but I miss the Indian summers of my youth, when creating structure (like homework nooks and regular meal times) wasn’t my responsibility. It's taken us a full four weeks to get back into the groove, but I’ll admit, having two kids in schools that have an actual start time—with a school bell—has created an order we haven’t known in eight years.

There’s been another game changer, too: Greta is super excited to help with way more meal prep, packing lunches and even tackling a few dinners on her own. The first thing I taught her to make is homemade Miso Ramen, with white miso paste, quick-cook ramen noodles, tofu, avocado and fresh greens or veggies she can pick from our garden. It's a super win for me (a healthy dinner I don't have to cook) and a pride point for my girl, who feels great about making a hot meal even her dad will devour.

Ramen was a weekly regular when we lived in the city—I looked forward to those texts from Andras (pre-emoji days) that said nothing more than, Ramen tonight? which meant that we’d meet at the tiny noodle shop between our subway stop and home, slurping them up in a cozy booth, safe against the first cold nights of fall. I remember, exactly, the first time we took Greta there when she was a decent noodle-slurping age (maybe, three?) and how she sipped that luscious pork broth and twisted noodles on s spoon with so much joy and pride.

Sigh (again). City life. Food seemed to magically appear. Here in the stix we have to make nearly everything we eat, especially if we want that addictive mix of big flavor but low commitment—easy and inexpensive but still dynamite food. I didn’t think I could pull off the ramen of my dreams here at home, but it turns out it’s all about the broth and the toppings and so much easier than I would have imagined.

Starting with the same slim noodle packet from my college days, minus the flavor packet, I stirred together a simple miso broth (it’s all about the quality of your miso-see the link below) and loaded the bowl with tofu, avocado, sprouts, mushrooms and our favorite chile sauce. It’s woah-so-easy and bonkers good. Here’s how:

RECIPE BELOW

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EASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE SAUCE) #easydinner #ramen #noodles #sarahcopeland #healthydinner

EASY MISO RAMEN (WIth TOFU, AVOCADO and CHILE SAUCE)

1 14-oz PACKAGE FIRM TOFU, DRAINED IN A COLANDER

2 LARGE OR 4 SMALL RADISHES, THINLY SLICED

4 TO 6 OUNCES SMALL MUSHROOMS, SUCH AS ENOKI

1 AVOCADO, CUT IN QUARTERS

1 HANDFUL SUGAR SNAP PEAS, CUT IN HALF LENGTHWISE

1 SPRING onion OR SCALLION, THINLY SLICED

2 tablespoons olive oil OR VEGETABLE OIL

2 PACKETS DRIED RAMEN NOODLES

1/4 TO 1/2 CUP WHITE MISO PASTE

3 CUPS FILTERED WATER

HANDFUL OF SPROUTS

CHILE SAUCE, SUCH AS MOM’S MALA

Flaky salt, such as Maldon

Freshly ground black pepper

 

DRAIN THE TOFU IN A COLANDER WHILE YOU PREPARE ALL THE OTHER INGREDIENTS: SLICE THE RADISHES, CUT MUSHROOMS INTO SMALL PIECES, HALF THE SUGAR SNAP PEAS, QUARTER THE AVOCADO AND SLICE THE SCALLION AND PUT IN SMALL BOWLS AS TOPPINGS. HAVE YOUR CHILE SAUCE, SPROUTS, SALT AND PEPPER NEARBY.

NEXT, PAT THE TOFU DRY ON ALL FOUR SIDES WITH PAPER TOWELS, AND CUT INTO CUBES OR BITE-SIZED PIECES. HEAT THE OIL IN A CAST-IRON SKILLET OVER MEDIUM HIGH HEAT. SEASON THE TOFU ON ALL SIDES WITH SALT AND PEPPER AND SEAR UNTIL NICELY GOLDEN BROWN ON ALL SIDES, AND WARMED THROUGH. REMOVE TO A PLATE OR BOWL.

BRING A POT OF WATER TO A BOIL, ADD THE RAMEN NOODLES AND TURN OFF THE HEAT. STIR OCCASIONALLY, UNTIL NOODLES ARE COOKED THROUGH AND SOFT, BUT NOT MUSHY (I LIKE TO TURN OFF THE HEAT SO THEY SLOW COOK QUICK I MAKE MY MISO-BROTH, SO EVERYTHING IS HOT AND READY AT ONCE).

IN A SEPARATE SMALL SAUCEPAN, HEAT THE WATER UNTIL WARM BUT NOT BOILING. WHISK IN THE MISO, ADDING MORE TO TASTE UNTIL THE BROTH IS DEEPLY FLAVORFUL, BUT NOT OVERLY SALTY (THIS WILL BE A DIFFERENT AMOUNT FOR EVERYONE—TASTE AND CONTINUE TO ADD MISO TO YOUR LIKING—REMEMBERING THAT YOU WILL ADD MORE FLAVOR WITH YOUR TOPPINGS).

TO MAKE YOUR RAMEN, USE TONGS TO DIVIDE THE NOODLES EVENLY BETWEEN FOUR DEEP BOWLS. LET YOUR FAMILY OR FRIENDS STACK THEIR DESIRED TOPPINGS OVER THEIR NOODLES (TOFU, AVOCADO, SNAP PEAS, SPROUTS, BABY MUSHROOMS—I LIKE IT ALL) AND THEN POUR OR LADLE THE BROTH OVER THE TOP. SERVE WARM, WITH PEPPER AND CHILE SAUCE.

PREP TIME: 15 MINUTES

TOTAL TIME: 20 MINUTES

SERVES 4

EASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE SAUCE) #easydinner #ramen #noodles #sarahcopeland #healthydinner

public.jpegEASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE SAUCE) #easydinner #ramen #noodles #sarahcopeland #healthydinner
EASY MISO RAMEN (WITH TOFU, AVOCADO AND CHILE SAUCE) #easydinner #ramen #noodles #sarahcopeland #healthydinner

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