This is very easy! If you have the items in stock you can make it in no time. Please try it when you're busy, or on a cold day. If you like udon noodles with egg and crab, you'll probably love this too!
Soy sauce or dashi soy sauce (soy sauce premixed with dashi)
1 to 2 teaspoons
Boil the dried noodles, cooking them about 1 to 2 minutes shorter than the time indicated on the package. In the meantime, fill a kettle and bring it to a boil.
While you're cooking the noodles, prepare the toppings. Slice the leek into thin rounds. Transfer the canned mackerl to a serving dish. Mix up the natto.
Make ready a little bowl each of raw egg, bonito flakes and soy sauce for each person. These will form the dipping sauce.
Transfer the cooked noodles to the tabletop cooker pot while they're still piping hot, and pour in the boiling water from the kettle. (Take care not to burn yourself.)
Turn on the tabletop cooker and put the pan with the noodles on the burner. Each person scoops out some noodles from the pot and eats it with the toppings and sauce of their choice. (Don't burn yourself!)
When the flavor is getting a bit thin, use some more soy sauce or egg. The natto shown in this photo has some local Yamagata pickled called Omizuke mixed into it.
These are noodles available locally in Yamagata...
But you can get similar ones nationwide at supermarkets. Choose a thick, sturdy type of dried noodle.
Story Behind this Recipe
Hippari udon is a regional speciality that the people of Yamagata prefecture love. It warms you up during the cold seasons. The reason why dried noodles and canned mackerel is used is because in the olden days, it was difficult to get fresh food during the winter in mountain communities. The toppings usually vary depending on your family's preferences, but this is how my family likes it.
In Yamagata prefecture, we usually serve this from the pot, which is brought to the table. You can use a pot made for a tabletop cooker which has a flat, stable bottom and can keep the contents hotter for longer. You can enjoy this piping hot if you take small portions from the pot several times. Thick, sturdy udon noodles are best suited for this.