|Posted on November 17, 2009 at 2:39 AM|
MAKING SOBA BY HAND IS ABSOLUTE COOKING.
Please also check out the Los Angeles Times Food Section's feature stories on Soba making, which includes step by step photosgraphs, recipes for making Soba, walnut and regular dipping sauces, and Soba side dishes. (Here is the link)
HOW TO MAKE SOBA NOODLES BY HAND (using a plastic bag)
The basic measurement for the flour was provided in grams.
If you plan to use more or less flour, remember to keep the 8:2 ratio of
buckwheat flour to all purpose flour, and the
water at 40% of the total weight of the two flours.
5.5 oz stone milled buckwheat flour (160 grams) (Cold Mountain brand or Japanese soba flour)
1.3 oz all purpose flour (40 grams)
2.8 oz (or 40% of clear cold water to total weight of buckwheat flour and all purpose flour (80 grams)
Uchiko flour for dusting (if you can't find Uchiko,use Cornstarch)
1 plastic bag (small trash bag)
Weigh the buckwheat flour and all purpose flour. Set aside 1 % of water (about 1/2 tsp of water) for kneading. Put the two flours and rest of the water in the plastic bag. Using both hands, lump together the flour mixture through the plastic bag.
Now take the dough out of the plastic bag, and put it on a cutting board or kneading sheet.
Shape the dough into a disc. Make holes on top of the dough with your thumbs. Pour the reserved water (1/2 teaspoon) into the holes, and knead the dough untl the water is incorporated completely. Apply pressure to the dough with your palm, and shape the dough into a ball.
Sprinkle uchiko on the kneading sheet/board. Place the ball on the sheet/board, and sprinkle uchiko on top. Using your palm, flatten the ball into a disc, about 15mm or 1/2 inches thick.
With a rolling pin, continue flattening the dough in diagonal directions until the disc is 8mm or 1/18 inch thick, and rectangle in shape. Use Uchiko sparingly while flattening the dough.
Fold the dough in four layers. Use "generous" amounts of uchiko in between the layers. Slice the dough into noodles, about 1.3mm wide.
HOW TO COOK FRESH SOBA NOODLES:
In a large pot, boil about 2 gallons or more water over high heat.
Gently drop the soba noodles into the boiling water. The water should be boiling vigorously to prevent the soba noodles from sticking to each other. Try not to use chopsticks or tools to separate the noodles while cooking.
Cover the pot and bring the water to a full, rolling boil again. The noodles will
take about 90 seconds to cook. If the soba noodles are thinner or thicker,
you will need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Scoop out the noodles with a colander or strainer, and immediately soak the noodles in a large bowl of cold water.
Prepare another bowl of ice water with ice cubes. Transfer the noodles into the ice cold water for a second to give the noodles a final shock treatment. Drain the noodles.
Serve the noodles on a dish ( zaru - Japanese style bamboo colnader or seiro -Japanese steaming mat), with the dipping sauce and Yakumi flavors - sliced negi (Tokyo style green onions), grated daikon, and shichimi pepper.
Note: Reserve some of the cooking liquid that is left in the pot. You can use it for cooking more noodles, and as "sobayu" - dipping sauce thinner.