Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Maven's First Attempt At Ramen, Part 2: Load Up Slow Cooker!

(Thanks, Justin, for the enthusiastic reply!)

This a.m., before heading off to work, I loaded up the slow cooker with everything I am using for my first attempt at soup stock for my ramen.

 Here, you can see I'm pre-soaking some shitakes (both, the shrooms and soak water go into the cauldron, by the way), some rough chopped garlic scapes, one star anise, a bunch of scallions, a big fat glob of the sushi ginger (It is the only ginger I use now, for pretty much everything--including Indian and Thai cooking, it's a great multi-tasker and time saver), Hondashi, and though I haven't seen it mentioned in others' recipes, I love white pepper.
 Into my six quart slow cooker, I layered the pork bones and aromatics, for even distribution.

 I then took a slab of my smoked pork belly from last night, and put it ontop. The ratio of meat to fat on this slab seemed "off" (more meat than fat, I mean), and I thought the meat dried out a wee bit in my smoking process, and I figure the slow cook will be good for a couple reasons, the least of which is to exude the smokey flavor to the broth, and perhaps break down the meat fibers a little bit.
I then put the dashi, some vinegar, some tamari, and some miso-marinade (since I don't have straight up miso/white miso here). Closed the lid, set the delay timer to start cooking in six hours, and a slow cook time of roughly six hours.

About to shower up, and head off to work. And will make an "accoutrements run" to pick up the enokis, more scallions and some wakame for the finished product! I cannot wait!

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