Sapporo Miso Ramen

The Ramen of Sapporo

Last week, I was watching a travel show on TV called Travels in Japan.  It was about Sapporo. They went to this famous ramen restaurant.

Morito Omiya, who founded “Aji-no Sanpei”, is the most memorable person among owners and chefs of ramen restaurant in Sapporo. He created “ramen in miso (fermented soybean paste) -flavored soup”. Before that, ramen was served only in soy sauce-flavored soup, which was cooked with soy sauce in soup stock of pig bones. He had been looking for new flour, so he kept researching it over and over. At last he found “miso-flavored” soup, which was familiar to Japanese people like soy sauce, and he came up with ideas to put stir-fried vegetables on it. Then he perfected “ramen in miso-flavored soup” and put it on his menu in 1954. This new ramen “with vegetables on it in miso-flavored soup” was significantly popular in Sapporo. About 1960, “miso-flavor” was started at other restaurants and established “the specialty of Sapporo” among tourists. After that, it got known all over Japan, by a demonstration of cooking it and a sale of it at exhibits of the products of Hokkaido in various parts of Japan or by the mass media. Between 1960 and 1970, as “the ramen of Sapporo”, it was extremely in throughout.

Sapporo Miso Ramen

1 tsp  vegetable oil
1 clove garlic, mince
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
2 oz ground pork
5 oz bean sprouts
4 oz chopped cabbage
2 oz carrot, cut into thin strips
4 cups warm water
2 tsp chicken bouillon powder
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp soy sauce
4 Tbs miso paste
2 Chukamen noodles*
½ tsp sesame oil

Add the minced ginger and garlic to the skillet and sauté the minced pork on medium heat. You can start boiling water as you will need enough water to cover all the ingredients latter. Now add the carrots, bean sprouts and cabbage, just for a few minutes and then add the water you had boiled which should be warm by now. Add chicken bouillon powder, sugar and soy sauce to taste and once the water starts boiling you know you’re almost there.

Now with the heat on low add the miso and make sure it’s all melted and mixed well.  Top it off with sesame oil. Separately boil the chukamen noodles add to a bowl and pour the sapporo miso soup onto it.

*Chukamen noodles are used for ramen dishes. These noodles are generally made with wheat flour and kansui (alkaline solution) in Japan.

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