Gifts from Afar … Part Deux

Ahhh, okay. It’s been unacceptably long since my last post. All I can say is that I am suffering from a major lack of inspiration in the kitchen. The pre-winter greyness outside is giving me a sense of gloomy listlessness and my repetetive daily menu pretty much reflects that. I’m not really thrilled with my living situation at the moment, but my contract out here in the ‘burbs of Toronto ends shortly, and I’m sure I will be moving onto greater things involving many reckless and indulgent cuisinary experiments.

In the meantime I’ve been reading all your blogs and enjoying the anticipatory preludes to American Thanksgiving.

For now, I’ve only got one thing to post. A friend of mine brought me back a gift from Japan–my favourite noodle and this blog’s namesake: UDON!! Except this is authentic stuff, handrolled by Japanese artisans and not purchased from a basement grocery in Chinatown (next to the pirated DVDs). I was told that it is a tradition in Japan to show up at a host’s house with a gift, and so these boxes of udon can frequently be found at train stations. They are not cheap, either!

The silver packet contains the traditional dressing for the udon noodles, which are eaten cold and wet immediately after cooking.

Unfortunately, we had the dressing ingredients translated and it contained a product made from crustacean shells. Instead, I used regular soy sauce.

To Japanesify the experience, I served the udon alongside some steamed salted edamame, and enjoyed a cup of Japanese green tea. It was all deeeeelicious!!

I also watched some HUMAN TETRIS during the meal and pondered how the Japanese can be soooo batshit crazy and awesome at the same time. What’s the secret??

Happy Thanksgiving, Americans!



16 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Shelby said,

    So simple and yet so deeeelicious!!!

  2. 3

    Wow, what a fun and thoughtful gift!

  3. 4

    Theresa said,

    Yum, I love udon noodles! I know what you mean about the crazy but cool. Maybe it has something to do with such high densities of people in such a small space?

  4. 5

    t said,

    Those noodles look luscious.. I need to venture over to the asian market and see what I can find!

    And thanks for the thanksgiving wishes… oh how strange this holiday must look to the rest of the world!

  5. 6

    Pamela said,

    Do you have the book Asian Vegan Kitchen? It has a great broth recipe that’s for soba, but just as good with Udon. I love udon too. In fact, I’m planning a winter break trip to Shikoku (the island off from Osaka) where the udon is reported to be the best.

    If you don’t have that recipe, email me and I’ll type it up for you.

  6. 7

    Carrie said,

    I didn’t know udon could look so fancy! It looks great!

  7. 8

    shellyfish said,

    What a wonderful gift! Even if you had to skip the sauce, so thoughtful and beautiful, too!

  8. 9

    What a lovely gift! WOW that Human Tetris thing is crazy!

  9. 10

    […] and Maureen at Mad About Udon – Yes, Udon is […]

  10. 12

    What an amzing gift! I love Udon noodles!

  11. 13

    Katie said,

    YUM those noodles look great!

  12. 14

    quarrygirl said,

    that looks so awesome, fancy and traditional. the only udon i’ve ever had is in a plastic bag from the supermarket! i am quite jealous. :D

  13. 15

    Liz² said,

    mmm, those noodles sound so good! and haha, human tetris is so batshit crazy, I can’t believe I watched most of that. XD

  14. 16

    FYI said,

    FYI, never cross your chopsticks like that.

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