1. Bring a medium pan of water to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium.
2. Prick the bottom of each egg carefully with a pin to make a small hole.
3. Place the eggs into the boiling water and cook for approximately 7 minutes (for a soft-boiled egg). Using a spoon or other utensil, swirl the eggs around the pan for the first couple of minutes of cooking to help the yolks stay centered inside the eggs.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and immediately place under cold running tap water to stop the cooking. Let the eggs cool completely and then peel.
5. Make the soy sauce tare (recipe below), strain, and let cool to room temperature.
6. Add the peeled eggs to the tare, making sure the eggs are completely submerged. Cover and marinate for 2-3 hours (no longer, or else the eggs will be too salty). Remove the eggs from the tare. If not using right away, place the tare in a container, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Freeze any leftover tare for future use.
Soy Sauce Tare:
1 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup sake
2 tbsp. mirin
1 pc. ginger, lightly smashed with flat of knife blade
1 scallion, cut into 1" pieces
1 clove garlic, smashed
1 cup dried bonito flakes (optional)
1. Place all the ingredients into a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat.
2. Turn off the heat and set aside. Strain before using.
Ramen Soup Base:
7 quarts of water
2 lbs. chicken parts (or wings, drumettes, drumsticks, etc.), rinsed under cold water
2 pcs. of ginger, lightly smashed with flat of knife blade
3 cloves garlic, smashed
3-4 scallions, cut into 2" sections
2 medium carrot, cut into large dice
1 1/2 - 2 lbs. pork belly (or 6 pieces) OR 2 pork tenderloins*
Braising Liquid for Pork:
4 cups water
1 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup mirin
2 star anise
1 tsp. whole black peppercorns
1 2" piece of cinnamon
1. Add all ingredients into a large pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 1 hour, skimming off any scum that forms on top.
2. Combine the soy braising liquid ingredients together in a medium pan, then add the cooked pork bellies. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the pork bellies are very tender. Turn off heat and set aside.
3. In the meantime, continue cooking the chicken wings in the broth another hour or until the liquid has reduced by about 1/3. Strain the broth through a sieve (discard the chicken parts & veggies) and let cool. If not using the pork bellies and stock right away, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. The broth also freezes well, so feel free to freeze any leftover for future use.
1 lb. fresh ramen noodles (egg or wheat) or 2 17-oz. pkgs. Yakisoba noodles (blanched 20 seconds)
1 lb. spinach, blanched in boiling water about 1 minute, then rinsed under cold water
Naruto (fish cakes), thinly sliced for garnish, optional
3 scallions, thinly sliced for garnish
Menma (pickled bamboo), optional
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch the spinach 1 minute, then remove to a colander and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking. Squeeze or blot dry with paper towels, remove to a chopping board and cut into 2" sections.
2. In the meantime, slice the braised pork bellies or pork tenderloin into thin slices and cut each soy sauce egg in half; set aside.
3. Place the ramen soup base in a pot and bring up to a boil, then reduce heat and keep on a low simmer.
4. Bring the water for the spinach back up to a boil, add the noodles and cook 2-3 minutes or according to package instructions. Turn off heat and drain the noodles into a colander.
5. Place 1/2 cup of the Soy Sauce Tare and 2 cups of hot ramen soup base into each serving bowl (should make 4 servings). If you have stone/ceramic bowls that can be heated directly over a burner, I highly recommend using these to keep the broth piping hot. Place each bowl of broth/tare over a burner and bring up to a boil over medium high heat. Divide the noodles between the bowls and top with several slices of the pork, some spinach, 1 soy sauce egg (halved), sliced scallions and pickled bamboo/Menma (optional). Remove the bowls carefully from the burners using oven mitts and place on heat proof plates. Serve immediately!
Here it is served in a stone pot, which keeps the soup piping hot.