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Spicy Duck Somen

Spicy Duck Somen

This recipe is adapted from Sonoko Sakai’s cookbook, “Japanese Home Cooking”. It is such a soul satisfying meal.

Ingredients
2 quarts dashi
¾ cup shoyu tare
1 tablespoon sake
2 duck breasts
Sea salt for seasoning the duck
¾ cup konbu dashi
¼ cup Suehiro usukuchi soy sauce
¼ cup mirin
½ cup Marusho rice vinegar
1 each Yamatsu Tsujita Takanotsume whole dried chili pepper, seeded & sliced thin
1 bunch scallions, cleaned and cut into 3 inches long pieces
1 cup sugar snap peas
200 grams (7 ounces) Miwa Yamakatsu somen noodles
Zest of a lemon
1 tablespoon grated ginger
Yamatsu Tsujita shichimi togarashi, optional

Method
To make the seasoned dashi broth for this dish, combine the dashi, shoyu tare and sake in large sauce pot, bring to simmer, then turn to low.

Season the duck breasts with salt and then put them skin side down into a saute pan and turn the heat to medium low. Render fat from the duck breasts, cooking until they are golden brown (6 to 8 minutes), then flip over, cook for one minute, and remove from the fat. Reserve the pan and the fat.

As you are browning the duck, in a small sauce pot combine the konbu dashi, usukuchi shoyu, mirin, vinegar and chili, and bring to simmer. Add the duck to the chili liquid and cook for about 4 minutes, flipping it over periodically. Remove duck from the liquid and let rest while liquid comes to room temperature. Now slice the duck thin.

While you are cooking the duck in the chili liquid, gently brown the scallions and sugar snap peas in the pan with the rendered duck fat until they are lightly brown and just cooked. Remove from the pan and reserve.

Cook the noodles following their package directions, then drain and separate into four bowls. Divide the seasoned dashi broth into each bowl, garnish with sliced duck, snap peas, scallion, lemon zest and grated ginger. Sprinkle with shichimi togarashi if desired.