my son loves udon noodles, now what??
My teenaged son went out to dinner with friends over the weekend and had a Japanese dish with udon noodles. He loved the sauce, but couldn't really tell me much about it except that it was mildly spicy and tasted really good. It was vegetarian. He would like me to make something similar for him, but I'm not the most talented or creative cook and could use some help with a recipe or 2. I'm not familiar with Japanese cuisine (sauces, spices, etc.). Thanks for any help you can give. Oh yes, please, the recipes must be fairly easy (no more than 30-45 minutes tops, from start to finish. Thanks again!
Was it sweet and spicy? Just savoury and mildly spicy?
I make noodles with a variety of sauces depending on my mood. While I tend to lean towards Malay and Thai preparations, I'd use some of the following if I wanted a 'Japanese' flavour: Sukiyaki, Tamari (Japanese Soy), Mirin (rice wine), Teriyaki (which can be made or bought prepared). I'd use ingredients like enoki mushrooms if available, fresh ginger, tofu, potentially egg. Noodles are used so diversly in Asian cooking and I don't think I'll ever get tired of them.
Here's a link to a recipe search that might help - I'm afraid mine are all a bit too 'throw in some of this and add a dash of that' to be written down:
The dish you're looking for is called yaki udon. If you google it you will find lots of recipes, but it goes something like this:
Veggies: Some combination of carrots, snow peas, onions, scallions, some type of asian cabbage, bell pepper, mushrooms, garlic/ginger, bean sprouts
Seasoning/sauce: Soy sauce, sesame oil, wine/sake, mirin, dashi (or dashi powder) or chicken stock, possibly some type of starch to thicken
Meat: Thinly sliced protein of your choice.
Basically you want to saute the veggies/aromatics and meat in a pan, and then add the noodles and sauce and toss. Top with sesame seeds and/or togarashi. Maybe shredded nori.
Or you could take this as an opportunity to spend a little time with honorable son, researching together at local joints once-twice a week, until he can find something similar in flavor to share with you. Then, when you've got better descriptors, everyone could pile on with recipes.
Just a suggestion. ;^)