Easy Asian Style Pork Noodle Soup

This noodle soup was trending on the NY Times Cooking site and it’s easy to see why. It’s quick, easy and flexible. Oh, and did I say delicious? Serves 4:

Easy Asian Style Pork Noodle Soup

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 ½ teaspoons red-pepper flakes, plus more to taste
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari, plus more to taste
  • 1 large bunch spinach, thick stems removed, leaves coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger (from about a 1 ½” piece)
  • 6 ounces rice noodles (thick- or thin-cut), cooked and drained
  • ½ medium red, yellow or white onion or 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup cilantro, leaves and tender stems, coarsely chopped

Heat vegetable oil in a large pot or Dutch oven on medium heat.

Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the slices become nicely toasted and golden brown, 2 or 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove garlic and set aside on a paper towel.

Add pork and red-pepper flakes to the pot, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, using a wooden spoon or spatula to break up large pieces, until the pork is well browned and in small bite-size pieces, 5 to 8 minutes.

Add chicken broth, soy sauce and 4 cups water. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5 to 8 minutes or so, until the pork is very tender. Give the broth a taste and add more salt, pepper, red-pepper flakes and soy sauce, if you want. Add spinach, half of the onion slices, and all of the ginger. Stir to wilt the leaves.

To serve, ladle soup over noodles and top with remaining onion, cilantro and toasted garlic, serve and enjoy!

My verdict:

It took a little tweaking to make it delicious, or as they said in the original recipe “impossibly good”. I’m not sure that mine was impossibly good, but it was really tasty and will definitely get made again.

The garlic really adds a great punch to this, mine got a little soggy, but the taste was the important part.

I was running out of soy sauce, so tossed in some fish sauce and still wasn’t getting the taste I wanted, so went rummaging through the cupboard and came up with some Umami sauce from Trader Joes and about a scant tablespoon of that helped a lot.

We had a bag of really thin rice noodles and used them for this, but for future I’d like a wider noodle. Especially with rice noodles, keep them separate from the soup until you’re ready to serve it or they’ll get mushy.

I think almost any of the ingredients could be swapped, for example using sausage without the casing instead of the ground pork. And any other ground meat could be used.

If you don’t have rice noodles, any ramen noodles or even spaghetti would work and as you can see from the photo, I added some cremini mushrooms. You get the idea.

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