How to cook udon

by Tobi Ajala

You will need to cook the udon in three stages: boil them, cool them and then warm them when ready to eat. It’s just done this way for optimum texture and taste, and it’s easier for timing. We can give you the science bit but it’s too boring for the first paragraph!
For 2 servings, bring 3-4 litres of (unsalted) water to the boil, in your largest pot. If you cook the udon in too little water, they will end up too salty.
Once your water is boiling rapidly, grab the noodles, shake them to separate them, put them in the water and set your timer to 15 minutes. If it looks as though it might bubble over you can add a dash of cold water to keep it at a steady rolling boil, stirring occasionally.
In the meantime set a full kettle on to boil, you will use this to warm the udon at the end.
Separately, use a small saucepan to bring the dashi to the boil.
Once your 15 minute timer is up, drain the udon using a colander. Fill your pot back up with cold water, return the udon to it, and then leave them in the pot under running cold water until thoroughly chilled. 
Portion up the udon in your serving bowls and pour over boiling water from the kettle. Leave them to warm for 1 minute, then drain each bowl individually.
Finally, pour in the piping hot dashi. To make Kake Udon simply finish with some chopped spring onion, or you can have a look through your fridge and get creative!