In its purest form, authentic Udon is a hearty, flavorful Japanese cuisine. Regardless of how well-made an Udon noodle is, the ingredients of its broth can either make or break the dish itself, and here’s why.
What Is in Udon Broth?
At its core, the Udon broth (also known as Dashi) serves as the foundation of the Udon dish. Comprised mainly of dried kelp, water, and a variety of fish, the Dashi provides the base flavor that helps enhance the taste of the Udon dish.
What Are Some of the Most Common Udon Ingredients?
While each restaurant has their take on what to include in their Udon dishes, as some may focus on more veggie items while others provide a more extensive variety of meat and seafood options, many of these noodle bars do include a few of the most common Udon ingredients below.
Eggs are a staple ingredient in Japanese cuisine. Served scrambled, hard-boiled, or in raw egg form, egg is an excellent component to Udon in part because of its adaptability to suit most any dish.
At Café Sanuki, eggs are an especially crucial ingredient to many of our Udon dishes, which is why we choose to use fresh organic eggs imported from Japan. Lower in cholesterol and free of pesticides, you can find organic Japanese eggs in many Café Sanuki dishes such as in Kamatama Udon (served raw), Ontama Bukake Udon (served poached), and our protein-rich Chicken & Egg Rice bowl, where we scramble the eggs to make a delicious dish.
Made from soybeans, born in China, and famous as a great meat alternative in vegetarian dishes, tofu is another common ingredient found in Japanese cuisine.
A soft food, tofu is served in a variety of ways from grilled to scrambled and even comes in liquid form as an ingredient to drinks. At Café Sanuki, we use tofu in one of our most popular dishes, Kitsune Udon.
Named after an animal popular in Japanese folklore, Kitsune (or fox) Udon is a dish comprised of fried tofu paired with Udon noodles topped with fresh scallions and slow-cooked in a sweet-soy broth that give it one unique taste!
In Japan, pork is as popular as chicken and beef. At Café Sanuki, we take this ingredient to a whole new level. Ever focused on developing better food, Café Sanuki imports pork from Denmark, where their farmers use very little (if any) antibiotics in their animals and thus deliver higher quality meat.
From there, we serve this ingredient in a variety of dishes ranging from Yaki Udon to thin-sliced Pork Shabu Udon, breaded pork Katsu Curry Rice to Miso Garlic Pork Belly, and last but not least our Pork Belly Bao sandwiches.
What Are the best Udon Toppings?
No Udon dish can be complete without a few toppings to complete the meal, which is why Café Sanuki takes pride in offering 3 traditional Udon toppings.
If you like fried food, then you’ll LOVE tempura. Prepared by dipping meat or vegetables in a batter comprised of egg, flour, and water, it is a topping that adds a slight crunch to the Udon dish.
Although other restaurants may offer tempura in either a single meat or vegetable form, at Café Sanuki we are proud to offer this topping in 8 different types.
- Fish Cake
- Sweet Potato
- Organic Japanese Egg
- Kakiage (mixed seafood and veggies)
2. Green Onions
Green onions are rich in nutrients and low in calories, and they add a very mild, spicy taste to Udon.
At Café Sanuki, we serve green onions as a garnish on top or as a side to our Udon and rice bowls, such as those below.
- Zaru Udon
- Kake Udon
- Clam Udon
- Bukake Udon
- Kitsune Udon
- Beef Rice bowl
- Kamaage Udon
- Niku Beef Udon
- Curry Beef Udon
- Mentai Cream Udon
- Ontama Bukake Udon
- Katsu Curry Rice bowl
- Cafe Sanuki House Udon
- Braised House Pork bowl
- Miso Garlic Pork Belly bowl
We also include green onions as a chopped veggie in our Pork Belly Bao sandwiches, which give a mild spicy kick to the flavor of the tender pork belly meat.
3. Rice Rolls
Also known as onigiri and omusubi, rice rolls are made of steamed white rice formed into the shape of a triangle and filled with another ingredient before being wrapped in seaweed.
Once developed as a quick meal for soldiers and travelers, rice rolls have become an ideal on-the-go grub in Japan. Rice rolls add a fun twist to Udon, as you can break off pieces of the steamed rice with your fork or chopsticks and dip it into the Udon broth to soak up the flavor and enjoy.
You can also mix up the seaweed wrap and stuffing with your Udon dish to help enhance the flavor of it, which is why we offer it in 6 different varieties at Café Sanuki.
- Plum fruit
- Tuna Mayo
- Konbu (kelp)
- Mentai (salved Pollock Roe)
Without a doubt, authentic Udon is a dish that is both versatile and unique in many ways. Based on a simple broth with high-quality ingredients and a variety of toppings it can be suited to serve most any taste for Udon lovers everywhere.
To that end, we humbly offer you the chance to visit us at Café Sanuki where our authentic Udon cannot be topped–except by these ingredients!