Matzo Ramen - Modernist Cuisine

Matzo Ramen

Recipe • April 21, 2014

When it came to preparing for Passover, my mother would always buy matzo in bulk, just in case we ran out. After the holiday, my family would attempt to consume the remaining boxes of matzo, only to surrender to fatigue after a few weeks. Those boxes would then be stored in my parent’s pantry and used throughout the year for matzo brei, which, for us, is spiced and then fried, like scrambled eggs. Given my family’s tradition, I was absolutely delighted when our culinary team developed the Matzo Ramen Noodle Soup recipe, using leftover matzo from our Matzo Ice Cream.

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Our Matzo Ramen Noodles are not kosher, however, because of the addition of hametz ingredients: vital wheat gluten, bread flour, and baking soda. Hametz are leavening ingredients that include wheat, spelt, oats, rye, and barley. While matzo is made of wheat, it is made under strict supervision to ensure the baking process does not exceed 18 minutes once the wet and dry ingredients have been combined—the 18-minute rule guarantees that the dough does not rise. We added baking soda to provide a wonderfully chewy mouthfeel that we attribute to ramen and Chinese noodles. Alkaline ingredients like kansui powder or in this case, baking soda, are traditionally what give these noodles their characteristic yellow color and chewiness. The hametz ingredients in this recipe might not be fit for traditional Passover observances, but Matzo Ramen is a great way to put leftovers to use after the holiday.

Similar to a matzo ball, these noodles sop up the savory, pressure-cooked chicken broth. And despite the unconventional shape, they retain that distinct matzo flavor. The addition of bright, tender vegetables to the broth is a reminder of spring. You can also pair this ramen with your family’s favorite broth for a new take on a beloved tradition.

– Caren Palevitz, Online Writer

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Matzo Soup recipe

Chicken Stock recipe

Tips & Substitutions

For the Ramen:
  • Check the consistency of your dough after 4 minutes in the mixer. It should not form a homogenous mass but should instead resemble a crumble. Squeeze the ramen dough in your hand—you want it to form a solid ball under gentle pressure but still break easily. If your dough is too crumbly to form a ball, add more water (30 g per ounce, added 1 oz at a time; check the consistency after each addition has been incorporated).
  • Taste your ramen as it cooks, and note that it cooks very quickly. It should have a chewy consistency but not be al dente. If your ramen becomes mushy, it’s overcooked.
For the Vegetables:
  • If you try to save time by cooking some of your vegetables at the same time, don’t overcrowd your water bath. Always make sure your water has enough room to circulate.
For the Stock:
  • This recipe can be made using other fowl by simply replacing the chicken meat and bones with those of duck or game fowl.
  • Carcasses left over from roasted chickens can be substituted for the chicken wings. Keep your chicken parts frozen until you have enough for a batch of stock.
  • You can find a variation for Brown Chicken Stock in Modernist Cuisine at Home, page 85.
  • For another variation, use your family’s favorite chicken stock recipe as a substitute.
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