Heat wave means it’s time for cold dinner. Hiyashi Chuka is a Japanese cold ramen. There is no broth, just a soy sauce dressing. Top with fresh vegetables, shrimp, ham & imitation crab (or anything you like). Cold, light & flavorful all in one!
Another heat wave! Many old apartments and houses near the coast have no air conditioning unit. Because of global warming and city development, it’s getting hotter and hotter every year. Air conditioning is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. Our old apartment that we lived in for 8 years didn’t have an AC. It was a nightmare during summer. Luckily, we have AC in our current place!
AC or not, we’re still looking for something cold and light for dinner. This Japanese cold ramen (Hiyashi Chuka) is just what you’re looking for. Lots of fresh vegetables, quick cooked shrimps, imitation crab, ham and egg crepe. Feel free to add or remove anything. The star of this dish is the ramen noodles. The ramen I used is made by Sun Noodle. They’re fresh noodles, just like the ones restaurants use. Thin and al dente. There isn’t much that you need to do with the noodles. Just boil, drain and soak in ice water to cool down. Last, mix everything with a savory and slightly sweet dressing. This dish is cold, fresh and light, which is really nice for a hot summer night.
Since there are plenty of ingredients, you may consider prepping early. Cook the corn, shrimp and egg crepe first, then keep them in the fridge. Next, finish cutting the rest of the toppings. Put them all on a plate and wrap in plastic wrap. Make the dressing and keep in the fridge. I like to keep my serving plates in the fridge too. That will keep your everything very cold when eating. Just right before dinner, cook the noodles. There you go, dinner is ready!
Hope you like this! Stay cool and drink plenty of water!
Hiyashi Chuka (Japanese Cold Ramen)
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1½ tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon roasted sesame seeds
- ¾ teaspoon Japanese or Chinese chili oil
- ¼ teaspoon ginger (grated)
- 1 ear of corn (removed husk and silk)
- 8 - 10 shrimps (peeled and deveined)
- 1 Persian cucumber (cut into 1/8-inch thin strips)
- 4 sticks imitation crab meat (shredded into thin strips)
- 3 slices lunch ham (cut into ¼-inch thin strips)
- ½ tomato (cut into wedges)
- Japanese karashi hot mustard paste (optional)
- Radish sprouts (optional)
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Vegetable oil
- 10 ounces fresh or dried ramen noodles (not instant noodles)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing. Transfer to the fridge to keep cool.
- Place 2 serving plates into the fridge to keep cool.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium. Carefully add the corn. Cover with a lid and cook for 4 minutes. Remove the corn from water and set aside to cool for 20 minutes. Lay the corn flat on the chopping board, cut the kernels off one side. Rotate and cut the other sides. Discard the cob and transfer to corn to a small bowl. Transfer to the fridge to keep cool.
- Bring the pot of water back to a boil. Add shrimps and do a quick stir. Cover and remove from heat. Check the shrimps after 1 – 2 minutes. When the shrimps are no longer translucent, they are ready. Drain and transfer to a plate to cool completely. Once cooled, transfer to the fridge to keep cool if not using immediately.
- For the egg crepe, whisk the eggs with sugar and salt. In a large skillet over medium heat, add ½ tablespoon oil. When the pan is hot, add the beaten eggs and tilt the skillet to spread the eggs evenly. Cook for 2 minutes until set, then cover with a lid for 1 more minute, or until cooked. Remove from skillet and cool for 5 minutes. Roll and thinly slice into strips. Set aside to cool completely.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Prepare a large bowl of ice water and set aside. Add noodles and separate them immediately with chopsticks or tongs. Cook according to package directions. Drain and soak the noodles into the prepared ice water. Soak for a few minutes, until the noodles feel cold. Drain again. Divide them into 2 serving plates (ones in the fridge).
- To assemble, grab a handful of each topping and place on top of the noodles. Top with some radish sprouts if using. Squeeze a small dollop of hot mustard paste on the side of the plate if using. Pour 4 – 5 tablespoons of dressing over each plate. Serve immediately with a bowl of dressing on the side.
- You can pick and choose which toppings to add. My personal favorites are corn and imitation crab.
- For the ham, I used lunch ham. They tend to be slightly sweet and moist, which is nice for this dish. I didn’t like how deli sliced ham tasted with the dressing.
- I used fresh ramen noodles by Sun Noodle, just like this one. They can be found in Japanese supermarkets in fridge isle. If you can’t find fresh ones, use dried, but not instant noodles.
- Chili oil and hot mustard can both be found in Japanese supermarket or from Amazon, this and this.
- Keep all ingredients cold while preparing for the dish. After all, you want a cold dish, not warm entree.