I am deliriously writing from Singapore, the air is thick and sticky. Everything smells like the sea and greasy Chinese food that sticks to the skin. There is a warm gentle breeze that cracks through the door. From my window, I can see the ocean. Cargo boats blur the line between the land and the sea. I haven’t been this far East, and now know jetlag is a real thing. From the distance, every building looks like a beacon of light; the streets clean. The sidewalks are covered with luscious, old trees, which seem to want to devour the land back. The people here seem to be from everywhere and nowhere at the same time.
It seems fitting to post this recipe today: I am in Asia, it is my thirtieth birthday week, and this is as far away from home I have ever been. All I am craving is a clean, warm bowl of comforting broth, with energizing vegetables. Beyond its beauty, this bowl is both comforting and breathtaking. It falls with tradition with last year’s longevity birthday noodles, yet is just a little more complex, sophisticated, and robust.
The key to this recipe is in the broth. Kombu, a thick, hearty seaweed is used to savor water, then whipped into a creamy of avocado and coconut milk. The fattiness of the avocado combined with the sweetness of the coconut milk makes for a balanced, fresh tasting, satisfying soup. You could stop here, and benefit from a belly warming, bone strengthening soup, or you could take things further and adorn your ramen with earthy buckwheat noodles, pan roasted Brussels sprouts, a soft boiled egg, and sliced avocado.
Don’t expect this to taste like your take out ramen. Like this city, this bowl of ramen it is clean and tropical, oozing with a fattiness that sticks to the ribs. I think you will love it.
Dreamy Avocado Ramen
Cook time, 35-45 minutes
The key to this recipe is to prepare the broth first, then cook all the condiments and garnishes simultaneously so that once they are ready you can quickly assemble each bowl and eat pipping hot.
To make the broth
- 1 strip kombu
- 4 ½ cups water
- 1 whole haas avocado
- ¼ cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup miso paste
- 1 tbsp. tamari (or soy sauce)
- Place kombu and water in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for four minutes.
- Remove kombu and toss.
- Place avocado, coconut milk and miso paste in a high-speed blender. Adding a bit of puree at a time, blend until smooth.
- Return broth to the pot and keep warm over low heat until ready to serve.
To make the noodles
- 10-12 oz. buckwheat noodles
- Place water in another large pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, then add noodles.
- Bring water back to a simmer and cook for 4 minutes. Remove from the pot, drain, and rinse under cold running water.
- Set aside until ready to serve.
To make the Brussels sprouts
- 6-8 brussel sprouts
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- pinch of salt
- dash of sumac
- Wash sprouts and remove outer leaves. Trim stem, then thinly slice.
- Place a skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil, slices sprouts, salt, and sumac. Cook, tossing occasionally for five minutes.
- Remove from heat and set aside until ready to serve.
To make 6 minute soft egg
(omit to make vegan)
- 4 eggs
- Place all eggs in a pot with enough water to cover the eggs by an inch. Bring water to a boil.
- Remove from heat, cover, and cook for 6 minutes. By the time you get to setting the timer, about a minute has passed, therefore I always set it to five minutes.
- Once the six minutes have passed, remove eggs from water immediately and cool under cold running water. Peel and set aside.
- Avocado, as much as you want, thinly sliced
- Sesame Seeds
- Fresh Cilantro leaves, chopped
- Green Onion, diagonally sliced
- Sriracha, or hot sauce of choice
Pour about a cup of the broth into bowls. Add a handful of the noodles into each bowl. Place cooked sprouts, soft boiled eggs, avocado, sesame seeds, and cilantro over the ramen. Serve immediately while still piping hot.