Making udon noodles
Noodles and rice
Making fresh udon noodles
Hiyashi chuka
Soba noodles and tsuyu
Mixed vegetable ramen
Soba and coriander pesto
Noodle nori rolls
Noodle and spinach salad
Vegetable rice
Mushroom rice
Stuffed mushrooms
Introduction :: Soups and dashi :: Egg dishes :: Sushi :: Fast food :: Noodles and rice :: Side dishes :: Desserts
Noodles are a very big part of Japanese cuisine and are often served hot in the winter and cold in the summer. There are four main types that I will mention here but there are lots of varieties with varous grains, thicknesses and added ingredients such as green tea powder. Mentioning them all here would be like trying to give a summary of all the types of pasta in Italy - impossible! Here is a general introduction.

Soba noodles are noodles made from buskwheat flour. As there is very little gluten in buckwheat to make a stable dough it is usually mixed with another flour such as wheat flour to make the noodles. Soba must contain at least 30% buckwheat in order to be officially called soba.

These noodles are usually bought dried and are made by rolling out thin sheets of the dough, folding it over and then cutting it with a very sharp knife into noodles. This gives it it's square shape. The picture at the top of the page gives you an idea how this looks although these are udon noodles.

If you have a pasta machine I have noticed that using the finest setting on the noodle cutter produces a similar result.

These noodles are also cut noodles (see picture above) and are made with wheat flour. They are cut much thicker. They can be bought dried or these days precooked in vac packed sachets. Having tasted all three I would say that, if you are not making your own, then the dried noodles are best. The vac packed ones are a bit rubbery and chewy.

These are much thinner wheat noodles and are made not by cutting but by pulling and stretching the dough just like the Chinese do.

Egg noodles
These are Chinese style noodles and are used in dishes such as Ramen and Tanmen.

I have included a couple of rice recipes to give you an idea how to cook rice that is not going to be used in sushi. Serve them as an accompaniment to a main meal.