Recipe Flash: Soba Noodles with Ginger Chicken Meatballs and Scallions
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As I whined about last week, I’m having a hard time finding hot food to put in my body without resorting to rich stews and creamy pastas. But the same old soups are getting tired, and I’m starting to crave texture, in addition to warmth and healthfulness. As any poor college student holed up on a snowy campus knows, ramen is an excellent answer to this question.
Using some leftover ginger chicken meatballs from a catering event, I created this excellent upscale ramen. It’s basically my version of Asian-influenced spaghetti and meatballs, with broth poured over it to satisfy my liquid heat needs. But it’s also an incredibly satisfying one-pot lunch or dinner. Try making the meatballs in advance, say, on a cold weekend afternoon, and keep them in your fridge for up to a week, or in your freezer for forever (that is, if you forget about these things like I tend to do). With a package of soba noodles in the larder, this healthy “stoup” will always be within reach.
From my kitchen, albeit small, to yours,
Phoebe, THE QUARTER-LIFE COOK
For the meatballs:
1 pound ground chicken thigh meat
2 shallots, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
One 2-inch knob of ginger, peeled and minced (about 2 tablespoons)
2 scallions, minced
3/4 cups fresh white breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon ketchup
1/2 teaspoon siracha
1 teaspoon salt
For the noodles:
1 shallot, thinly sliced
4 scallions, thinly sliced (white and green parts divided)
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1 quart chicken stock
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 pound buckwheat soba noodles
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for the meatballs. Form into small 1 inch balls (you should get 24 or so), and arrange them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake in the oven until golden brown, 20-25 minutes. Set aside.
In the meantime, heat 1 tablespoon of neutral vegetable oil in a large stock pot or Dutch oven over a medium-low flame. Add the shallot, white parts of the scallions, and the ginger, and saute until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Pour in the stock and soy sauce, and bring to a boil. Add the noodles and simmer until they are al dente, about 6 minutes, or as specified on the package. Add the meatballs and the remaining scallions to the pot. Taste for seasoning: if lacking in salt, add more soy; if you like spice, add some siracha. To serve, ladle the noodles, meatballs, and broth into 4 bowls and eat immediately.