Would you believe me if I told you I’d never had ramen before making the recipe I’m sharing with you today? Well, it’s true! Even on a college dime I never tried it. I’ve always been a macaroni and cheese kind of girl, ever since I was a wee one. The kind in the blue box that’s 98 cents. Or if I’m feeling fancy, the liquid gold kind for 2 dollars a box. A guilty pleasure that I haven’t indulged in since we moved into our new place.
When we moved we decided that we’d go ahead and alter our diet a little bit. I don’t care much for a strict diet – there isn’t any gluten-free, paleo, or vegan-style eating in my house. What we discussed doing to eat a more healthy and balanced diet is to start cutting out processed foods. It’s a slow transition that’s taking place in my grocery shopping and until I feel completely settled in, it won’t be in full force. But, I haven’t bought those childhood favorites of mine. And I’m not buying those canned cinnamon rolls that we require every Sunday morning, either!
I feel like there are a lot of changes taking place and definitely a lot of “firsts.”
I just spent my first week “home alone” with the two boys while my husband was in Denver for work. To say I was scared would be an understatement. I’m happy to report that the three of us did survive, and with very minimal scarring. Treat decided it was high time to learn to stand the day Stuart left. At six months old! I expected the second child to do things more quickly to be able to keep up with the older sibling, but I was not prepared for things to happen this fast! He seems to only half master a skill before careening head first into the next milestone. At the age of 6 months he started to sit, started to army crawl, started to hands-and-knees crawl, mastered the army crawl, mastered sitting, pulled himself up, and started to scoot along the couch. If you ask me, that’s way too many things to discover in 4 short weeks. He needs to stop trying to be a toddler and just be a baby!
Among the “firsts” is my first taste of ramen noodles (not including the flavoring packet, just the noodles) and my first usage of miso in my own kitchen. Due to the enormous size container of miso, you’ll be seeing a bit more of the Japanese product on the blog in the future.
I loved the flavors of the roast pork tenderloin, sweet from the honey with the warm spiciness (not heat) from the Chinese 5 spice powder. It paired nicely with the subtly salty broth. I even actually ate the mushrooms in the soup – gasp! As for the ramen, I don’t think I’ve met a noodle I don’t like. For 12 cents and a 3 minute cook time, I’ll be looking to the Chinese noodle more often.
Pork Ramen with Mushrooms and Spinach
- 1 lb pork tenderloin
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
- 4 tbsp soy sauce, divided use
- 1 tbsp sherry
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
- 1 portabella mushroom cap, thinly sliced
- 7 C chicken broth
- 1 tbsp white miso
- 6 C baby spinach
- 3 pkgs (3 oz) ramen noodles, soup mix discarded
- sliced scallions, for garnish
- Put the pork in a large bowl and sprinkle with sugar, Chinese five-spice powder, and salt. Pour 2 tbsp of the soy sauce and the sherry over the pork as well. Let marinate at room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
- Place pork on a foil lined rimmed baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes. Flip and roast another 15 minutes, or until an internal temperature of 145 degrees F is reached. Brush the pork with the honey and roast about 5 minutes, until pork is 155 degrees F. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a dutch oven over medium-high heat. Cook the onions until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook another 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock, remaining 2 tbsp soy sauce, and the miso. Bring soup to a boil, reduce to simmer, and cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the spinach to the soup until wilted.
- Cook ramen according to package instructions.
- Assemble: Divide the ramen among 4 shallow bowls, ladle soup over the noodles, and top with sliced pork. Garnish with scallions.
*This recipe is adapted from CookFresh Spring 2016*