“Udon” is a Japanese noodle made of only flour, salt and water. Unlike ramen noodles, udon noodles are chewier and firmer.
Buckwheat is called Soba.
Japanese people often eat a bento box with a sushi and udon set. These are also sold at supermarkets and convenience stores.
Today, I explains Udon & Soba.
Udon noodles are named according to their thickness.
There are three types of noodles: fresh, frozen and dried.
The texture of all types are not so different.
But the raw noodles can be eaten as they are, while the dried noodles need to be cooked for about 5 min.
Soumen is the thinnest and has a diameter of less than 1.3 mm. it is said the product in Hyogo prefecture is the most famous and high quality. “Ibonoito” is the highest bland in Japan.
“Hiyamugi” means the cold wheat noodle. The diameter of this one is 1.3 to 1.7 mm.
We don’t eat it hot and this is a typical dipping noodle in summer.
Udon can be served hot or cold.
Sanuki is most famous for udon. Sanuki is the former name of Kagawa Prefecture, Shikoku. So, they are called the Udon prefecture.
Kishimen is from Aichi prefecture. This noodle made in flat strips. The width is about 0.8mm.
The ratio of buckwheat flour varies from 100 percent buckwheat, to 2:8 wheat flour, to half buckwheat, and so on.
“Sobagaki” is buckwheat mash. Food made into a rice cake by kneading buckwheat flour with boiling water. It is eaten as a snack for Sake.
The Udon is made of 100% wheat flour, salt and water. We usually use verb for handmade is “Tsukuru”, but only noodles are used “Utsu”.
Therefore, noun for homemade noodles are “Te-uchi”. (“Te” means hands)
If you use a “Teuchi” something except for noodle like that, “Is this Udon?🤣”
And we will laugh at you.
Some people do not use by hands, but step on it with their feet😣
Unlike udon noodles, soba noodles are very difficult to make. It may be often terrible shredded one after boil…
It is said that the cutting technique only takes for only 3 days and the stretching technique takes 3 months.
But, the technique of mixing buckwheat flour and water well is taken up to 3 years too.
This process is called “Mizu mawashi”. Buckwheat flour is difficult to handle.
Soba kiri Houchou
“Soba kiri” means cutting buckwheat. “Houchou” means Japanese knife. So, this knife is for cutting the Soba. This shape is long heavy knife with a single edge.
But, there is not knife for cutting the Udon.
When we cut the Udon, we usually use pasta cutting maker (I recommend pasta maker “Imperia” in Italy.) or ordinary knife.
We change the taste of the soup depending on the noodles.
Soba sauce has the strongest taste of soy sauce.
Udon dipping sauce tastes completely different in each region.(This photo is soup for soba)
Somen-tsuyu is a little sweeter and is made from a crispy broth, so its color is also lighter.
After eating soba at a soba restaurant, you may be served a teapot of hot water.
This is called “Soba-yu”.
“Yu” means the hot water. This hot water was used boiling soba noodles. The tea pot is called “Yutou”.
This soup is muddy, and taste is like a porridge. It is effective against hangovers.
Use chopsticks to eat udon and soba.
Hot noodles are served in a bowl, cold noodles are served in a plate or a basket, and we eat soba dipping into soup with Soba Choko.
There are many antique collector of Soba Choko.
There are many different toppings with udon noodles, but when we eat soba, we always add chopped scallion, wasabi, and nori in the topping.
Today I explained the basics of udon and soba.
Next time, I’ll show you some general recipes.