If you love seafood and udon noodle soups then this recipe is made for you. A very easy recipe that will deliver on flavour and most importantly… comfort. Can be made in under 20 minutes which is perfect for anyone wanting something delicious without any effort.
Today’s dish is an invention of mine that is the result of fusing an old recipe together with a little bit of laziness. The main inspiration is the Vietnamese noodle soup called ‘banh canh,’ which is made with tapioca noodles, pork hock and crab. I then combined this with store bought chicken stock (lazy part) and added preserved radish for a big burst of flavour.
For a little over a week, we have been refining this recipe. We have struggled to agree on a few things about the recipe. Steph likes to have it with udon noodles, fish cakes and spring onion. I on the other hand like it with tapioca noodles, no fish cakes and coriander. Whatever your preferences maybe, I have included all options in the recipe for you guys to make up your own minds.
Lastly, I want to get something off my chest before we get into the recipe details. From the picture below, do you know someone who eats their prawns like the one on the left? The one that basically looks like a full prawn??? I do. I won’t mention any names but she’s a splitting image of my wife…
If you are like me and this gets you a little upset inside, then join me in calling it out! We must stay vigilant and true to our cause to stop prawn wastage… even if the culprit is your wife or husband!
Tips for Success
- If possible, make the trek to your Asian groceries and buy preserved radish. It is full of flavour and really elevates this dish. It is possible to make this without it, but it will not taste as good.
- If using udon noodles, cook them in a separate pot. This will prevent the soup from going cloudy.
- If using tapioca noodles, always blanch them in boiling water to loosen them up and wash away unwanted flavours / excess oils.
- If you like a clear broth, then blanch the mince in boiling water first. To do this, put the mince in a large bowl and pour boiling water until completely covered. Then with a spoon, break up the mince and free the scum from the meat. Pour the liquid out and repeat. Do not use a strainer for this.
- Tapioca starch noodles (banh canh) are cheaper then udon noodles but are generally only available at Asian groceries.
- Do not skip the fried shallots and lemon. Trust me.
- If you have leftovers, it is best to fish out the noodles and store the soup and noodles separately in the fridge. This will avoid the noodles from soaking up all the soup.
This table shows how much this recipe will cost if you had to go out and buy everything on the ingredients list (“Shop Price”), as well as the value of ingredients actually used in the recipe (“Recipe Cost”).
We haven’t included optional ingredients or small quantities of salt, pepper or sugar as the cost would be negligible. All prices are in Australian dollars and are based off what was published on Coles Online or Woolworths Online as at time of writing.
|Recipe Needs||Recipe |
|Chicken Stock||1 L||$1.90||1 L||$1.90|
|Pork Mince||500 gm||$5.50||150 gm||$1.10|
|400 gm||$4.00||10 gm||$0.10|
|Fried Shallots||100 gm pack||$2.75||15 gm||$0.41|
|Fish Sauce||300 ml bottle||$2.00||1 tbsp||$0.10|
|Udon Noodles||3 x 200 gm packs||$4.20||500 gm||$3.50|
|Prawns (frozen)||500 gm pack||$17.60||6 (70 gm)||$2.46|
|Spring Onions||1 bunch||$2.00||1 stalk||$0.10|
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Quick Seafood Udon Noodle Soup
- 1 L low sodium chicken stock
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 tbsp fried shallots (store bought)
- 10 gm preserved radish (available at Asian groceries)
- 500 gm tapioca noodles (banh canh) or udon noodles (available at Asian groceries)
- 150 gm pork mince
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 pinch salt
- pepper to taste
- 6 raw medium prawns, peeled
- 4 fish balls or cakes, cut in half (optional and available at Asian groceries)
- 2 tbsp fried shallots (store bought)
- 1/4 lemon
- 1 stalk spring onion, finely chopped
- 5 sprigs coriander, finely chopped (optional)
- 1 chilli, finely chopped (optional)
Measure and prep all of your ingredients.
Prepare the noodles as per packaging. (Note 1)
In a medium sized pot, add the chicken stock, water, preserved radish and fried shallots. Turn the heat up to medium high and allow the pot to come to the boil.
Optional Step (to make a clear soup)
Add your mince meat into a large bowl and massage it with your fingers. Pour boiling water over the meat until it is completely covered. Use a spoon to break up the meat and release the scum from the mince. Carefully, pour the liquid out and repeat.
Add the pork mince and bring the stock back to the boil. Cook for 2 minutes and scoop up any scum that build up on the edge of the pot.
Add the fish sauce, salt, pepper, prawns and fish cakes. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes.
Add the noodles and cook them for a 1 – 2 minutes or until done.
Check the seasoning of your soup and adjust according to your taste. (Note 2)
Ladle the noodle soup into bowls.
Garnish with spring onions, coriander, chilli and fried shallots.
Serve with a wedge of lemon.
- If using udon noodles, then cook them in a separate pot with plenty of boiling water for 2 -3 minutes or until done. Strain the noodles and leave aside until needed. If using tapioca noodles, put them in a large bowl and pour boiling water over them until completely submersed. Leave for 2 minutes and then slowly loosen the noodles with tongs or chopsticks. Strain and leave aside until needed.
- If you want more saltiness and flavour then add fish sauce. Otherwise, just add salt.