Udon Noodles

Udon 05

I have never made any kind of pasta or noodle from scratch before, but after this experience I am definitely willing to experiment some more. These noodles are incredibly easy to make, in fact it was a lot of fun to make these. I have always used packaged Japanese udon noodles in soups and stir fry but this was the first time when I thought of making them at home. After you make this recipe – once you have the basic noodles, you can then put them in an airtight box and use them fresh in other recipes for upto a week and for much longer if you freeze them. Just divide them into individual portions and freeze them in separate containers or ziplock bags, then when you are ready to use them, pull out one or two portions and just drop them in the broth if making soup or thaw a little bit in the microwave and add it to a stir fry.

The process for making the noodles is simple and calls for basic ingredients like flour, salt and water. The only thing required is arm and leg muscle for kneading. Use your palms for the first round of kneading and let the dough rest overnight. Next day put the cool dough into a ziplock bag and knead it with your heels. This process could feel a bit strange and possible would gross you out at first…but you’ll get over it. You are not touching the dough directly and your feet are probably very clean – and besides that’s how they still press wine in some parts of the world….if you don’t gross out while drinking wine then you’ll be fine eating these noodles as well. I actually enjoyed kneading the dough with my heels…it was fun!

You then roll the dough into a thin sheet, fold it in thirds and cut thin strips. Roll the strips in some flour, boil them and voila – there you have it, fresh homemade udon noodles. You can eat them fresh with your choice of dipping sauce. I like mine with a little bit of butter and salt.

On another note – I will be travelling for the next couple of weeks and will post the next recipe only upon my return. In the meantime you can find pictures from my travels on instagram. Find me on instagram @pallavigk

Udon 01

Udon 02

Udon 03

Udon 04

Udon 06

Serving for 2

cooking time 45 minutes

Ingredients

2 cups all purpose flour

1 cup warm water

1 tsp salt

  1. Dissolve the salt in water.
  2. In a large bowl add flour. Add water and knead for 8 to 10 minutes to form a smooth dough.
  3. Wrap the dough in a plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight.
  4. Remove the rested dough from the fridge, place it in the ziplock bag. Leave a small opening while sealing the bag. Tip: Sprinkle some flour in the bag and shake it to coat the bag lightly with the flour from the inside. This will avoid the dough from sticking to the bag. 
  5. Knead the dough for a couple of minutes with your heels, remove from the bag and fold it in half twice. Place it back in the ziplock bag and repeat the kneading and folding 2 more times.
  6. Roll out the kneaded dough into a thin (roughly 1/8 thick) sheet. Sprinkle the sheet with a little flour and fold it in thirds. Using a sharp knife cut thin strips width wise. (My picture shows it being done horizontally, which is incorrect).
  7. Sprinkle some flour onto the cut noodle and roll them into the flour to avoid sticking.
  8. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and boil the noodles for 4 to 5 minutes stirring them every now and then.
  9. Strain the noodles in a colander and run through cold tap water moving them around with your fingers. Let the excess water drip out and transfer the noodles into a container. Udon noodles are ready!