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Ramen: The Perfect Food for Fall

Photo: Slade Smith/freeimages.com

Fall is a time for warm comfort food. But it doesn't have to always be heavy. The inspiration for the following dish was my love of ramen, and how different an individual can make it with the use of any ingredients they choose. I recently spoke with our Kitchen Manager about creating something nice for our residents, but not so heavy like a typical stew. We both simultaneously said -- why not ramen? It will look appealing, be very different, and taste delicious; all the while not be so heavy like typical stews. It still has the same effect as feeling warming on a cool fall day. Pork Broth: 4 oz Kombu (dried Kelp) 3 oz Dried Shitake Mushrooms 6 lbs Pork Neck Bones (roasted) 2 Bunch Scallions 2 gal Water Combine Hot Water and Kombu let it sit for two Hours, Pull out kombu and discard. Combine remaining ingredients and simmer on low for 6 hours. Strain out ingredients and cool completely. Once cooled skim of all fat. Tare: Soup Seasoning 2 chicken backs ½ cup sake ½ cup mirin 1 cup soy ¼ cup rice wine vinegar 1 piece fresh ginger root 5 clove garlic ¼ lbs apple wood bacon Render Fat off Chicken Backs in low oven, raise temperature to crisp chicken back. Deglaze with Sake scraping the fond of the bottom. Add remaining ingredients and simmer very low for 2 hours. Strain ingredients and cool completely. Skim fat after completely cooled. Combine the tare & broth in a 1:10 ratio. (10 cups hot broth to 1 cup hot tare). Ramen Ingredients: Can be endless, anything you would like add as much or as little as you like. We used: Butternut Squash peeled & Cooked ahead of time (do not overcook want it to hold its shape) Scallions sliced thin Soft boiled eggs Baby Bok Choy Crispy Pork Belly Toasted Nori             

is the Executive Chef at  Atlantic Shores in Virginia Beach where he develops original, delicious dishes for residents and their guests. He has worked at top restaurants in Virginia and New Jersey, and his unique dishes have earned a variety of local awards, including: People’s Choice at the Virginia Foodbank’s Tastefully Yours competition; Most Creative Recipe in the Seton Youth Shelter Derby; and three awards at the Mariners Museum’s History Bites competition — Judge’s Choice, People’s Choice, and Iron Clad for Most Authentic.