How to Make Ichiran-Style Ramen at Home

With the rising interest in Japanese food, Ichiran quickly became a go-to choice for many people when they visit Japan—not just because of the restaurant’s quirky cubicle set-up, but also because of their ramen. A no-frills ramen bowl with uniformly thin noodles, a light pork broth, and a sweet-salty piece of round chasu meat; it’s as straightforward as it gets.

Although they’ve released instant versions and DIY kits for the Japanese experience at home, not everyone can get a hold of them. So, for those who are constantly craving their famous ramen, we got a tip from blogger Jaey Ashley Silva on a copycat Ichiran recipe that she tried out and says is pretty legit. While it does take a long time to prepare, she promises that it will all be worth it in the end. Check out her take on this dupe here!

How to Make Ichiran-Style Ramen at Home

Photo from Jaey Silva (heyjaey.com)

Photo from Jaey Silva (heyjaey.com)

Ingredients

For the Ramen Noodles:

  • 300 mg of angel hair pasta or thin noodles pasta
  • 1 tbsp of baking soda

For the Broth:

  • 1/2 kg of pork bones
  • 1 l of water
  • 3 tbsp of soy milk or evaporated milk (optional)

For the Tare Base:

  • 1 sheet of fresh seaweed
  • 40 g of dried dulong (originally should have been dried sardines, but you can always use anchovies, too)
  • 3 to 4 pieces of shiitake mushrooms
  • 100ml of kikkoman soy sauce
  • 2 tsp of sugar
  • 25ml of mirin or rice vinegar
  • 25ml of sake

For the Secret Red Sauce Topping:

  • 1 tbsp of chili powder
  • 1 tbsp of sesame oil
  • 25ml of mirin or rice vinegar
  • 25ml of sake
  • 1/2 tbsp of shredded garlic
  • 1/2 tbsp of shredded ginger

For the Ajitsuke Egg:

  • 2 pcs of boiled eggs
  • 100ml of light kikkoman soy sauce
  • 100ml of mirin or rice wine
  • 100ml of sake

For the Chashu:

  • Pork belly / shoulder
  • 2 inches of sliced ginger
  • 1/2 clove of garlic
  • 2 tsp of sugar
  • Leeks, sliced

For the other toppings:

  • Shitake mushrooms, chopped
  • Green onion, minced

Procedure

The Day Before

For the Broth

  1. Wash the pork bones, then soak them in hot water for 30 to 40 minutes. Discard the water afterwards.
  2. Boil water in a pot, and cook the pork bones for four hours while stirring occasionally. Although the recommended cooking time is four hours, you can cook it for longer for stronger flavors. The broth will eventually look milky; this is the ideal consistency.
  3. Remove excess meat, or grind it into the broth.

For the Chashu

  1. Heat a pan over medium and add oil. When hot, sear your pork belly or shoulder on all sides. When brown, add soy sauce, leeks, ginger, and garlic. Make sure the meat is well-soaked.
  2. Cook for 40 minutes or until very soft.
  3. Let it cool down, then place the meat and marinade in a container. Refrigerate.

For the Ajitsuke Tamago

  1. Boil the eggs for 7 to 9 minutes, depending on how firm you want them to be.
  2. Remove them from their shells, and poke all of the sides with a toothpick.
  3. Soak the egg in mirin, sake, and soy sauce overnight in the fridge.

For the Tare Sauce

  1. Soak the shiitake mushrooms, seaweed, and dried fish in soy sauce and water overnight. There’s no need to refrigerate this, but make sure to cover it properly.

On Ramen Day

  1. Reheat the broth for another hour before serving. If you want the broth to be more liquid-y, add some boiling water and stir.
  2. In a separate pan, prepare your secret spicy topping by mixing sesame oil, chili powder, minced garlic, minced ginger, and sake over low heat. Cook until thick, and set aside.
  3. Remove the chasu from the marinade and grill it over medium heat with butter.
  4. Reheat the tare sauce in another pan.
  5. Cook the angel hair pasta in boiling water. Add baking soda to prevent clumping, and stir. Cook until you get your preferred noodle consistency.
  6. Drain the pasta and place it in a serving bowl.
  7. Assemble by slicing the eggs that were soaking overnight in half. Place them on top of the noodles.
  8. Carefully place the sliced shiitake mushrooms and spring onions on the side of your bowl.
  9. Pour your broth over your noodles, and add two tablespoons or more of your tare sauce, depending on how you like it.
  10. Depending on how spicy you like your ramen, add two tablespoons or more of the secret spicy red sauce. And done! Itadakimasu!

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