Udon: Two Fusion Ways {U for Udon}

When my group of lovely ladies and I decided that we would do u for udon for our ingredient challenge, I thought it was a brilliant idea because I adore udon noodles. Then various obstacles got in the way, and I was afraid I wasn’t going to be able to cook them at all.

First of all I spent Easter at my parents place. This part was not really an obstacle, it was just that I did not cook anything because I get to sit back and enjoy my mum’s superb Indonesian cooking.

Then I got back to Barcelona. Because I got back still in the midst of the Easter holidays, it seemed that everything was shut. On Tuesday I went out in my quest for udon noodles, guessing that everything should be back to normal. Most shops where still shut. As the saying goes: Spain is different. The streets even looked sad. Or they did in my very traditional neighbourhood anyway. The few stores that were open that could potentially sell them did not sell them. After a lot of walking, I was beginning to think that udon noodles must be considered a very exotic luxury item here and that I would need to travel to the other side of the city to get some. Or perhaps even create them myself.

Finally, after one hour, I found some! Oh, and they were in an Argentinian supermarket…

I guess the moral of my story is that udon searching in certain parts of Barcelona can help you keep fit. You need to intensely walk for one hour before you find them.

At the end I bought enough udon to make not just one but two udon dishes. Even though udon noodles are Japanese, instead I’ve made some of my typical fusion mixes with it.

Udon noodles with spicy honey and mustard oven baked pork ribs – this is my spicy European fusion version of an udon recipe.


400g udon noodles, 500g pork ribs, 1 tablespoon mustard, 1 tablespoon honey, 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes, salt, black pepper, 2 teaspoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons corn flour, 3/4 cups water

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Mix the mustard, honey, chili flakes, salt, pepper and olive oil in a bowl. Rub the mixture all over the pork ribs. Cook in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes. Once cook, separate the ribs and the sauce it left behind. Pour the sauce into a saucepan with the cornflour dissolved in water. Cook until it reduces to a think sauce.

At the same time. Boil some water and cook the udon noodles. Drain them once they are ready.

Arrange the udon noodles on a plate with some pork ribs on top. Pour the spicy honey and mustard sauce on top.

Note: I used the Maille Dijon Originale Mustard. I like it because it has a spicy flavour.

Udon with spicy honey and mustard pork ribs

Udon noodles with tofu and kecap manis – this is my Indonesian fusion version of an udon recipe using the Indonesian soya sauce kecap manis.


400g udon noodles, 400g tofu, 1 tablespoon kecap manis, 1 spring onion, salt, black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes, 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Boil some water and cook the udon noodles. Drain them once they are ready.

Heat the sesame oil in a large wok. Chop the green parts of a spring onion. Add the spring onion and cook for a few seconds. Add the kecap manis, salt, black pepper and chili flakes. Stir fry for about 30 seconds. Add the udon noodles and stir fry for about 1 minute. Remove the noodles and arrange on a plate.

In the same wok with the rest of the keycap manis sauce, add the tofu. Stir fry for about 30 seconds.

Arrange the tofu on top of the udon noodles.

Note: I used soft tofu. I cooked them in the wok after removing the udon so that they wouldn’t come into danger of disintegration.

Udon plus tofu and kecap manis

We are happy to welcome Ngan and Anna in our Ingredient Challenge this month. I hope they have enjoyed her first ingredient challenge with us.

I would also like to make an invitation to anyone else that would like to join us in our ingredient challenge. Each month we go through the letters of the alphabet and choose an ingredient starting with that letter. We choose a day and time to publish it. Until now we are only ladies but men that like to cook are also welcome! If you are interested in joining in, please send me a comment or an email. My email can be found in my about page.

But now it’s time to check out what the other lovely ladies have cooked with udon:

Curls and Carrots

food for fun

ngan made it

Anna’s Cuisine

Thank you for reading!

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  1. Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward 2014-04-24 at 23:23

    Both recipes look amazing, Sofia. I can’t wait to try them. Your noodles look perfectly cooked, too. An hour of walking… wow… you’ll get your exercise each month with our blogging challenges. I am so impressed with your fortitude – and brilliant cooking. 🙂

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-24 at 23:31

      Haha, as long as we don’t choose some very traditional Spanish ingredient (such as chorizo) the last few months tendency is proving that our monthly challenges forces me to do some walking 🙂

    2. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-24 at 23:31

      PS My 2nd recipe is so quick to make (if you have a good wok that is). Save that one for a day when you’re in a rush!

  2. Ngan R. 2014-04-24 at 23:24

    Both dishes look delicious, Sofia. I like how you used the udon to create fusion recipes. You managed to find fresh, plump udon, I see, something I was not able to find. Maybe I should have walked around longer! You, Shanna and I both had udon and tofu on the brain — a natural pairing, I think. I had a lot of fun cooking along with this challenge and look forward to the next one!

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-24 at 23:29

      Yes its funny because last month we did T for tofu (and though you joined now) its funny that we used tofu again. But as you say, its a natural pairing 🙂 I’m glad you had fun, and hope you will next month too! 🙂

  3. Michelle 2014-04-25 at 03:27

    Both look delicious. But I think I’ll have the tofu, please.

  4. Pingback: Spiced Udon Stir-fry (U is for Udon) « Anna's Cuisine

  5. annascuisine 2014-04-25 at 04:57

    I just published mine. I had an emergency and I couldn’t check my e-mail nor published my post at the same time. So sorry. 🙁
    Anyway, Wow! Both dishes look delish! Adding the tofu made it lighter. It’s calling my name. 🙂 You’re fortunate to have found some fresh udon noodles. I have no transportation, so I settled for the dry ones. Great dishes, Sofia. <3 🙂

      1. annascuisine 2014-05-07 at 06:40

        Sorry for my delayed response, Sofia. Yes, everything is okay now. Thank God. I hope you had a lovely weekend. 🙂

  6. Liz 2014-04-25 at 05:59

    Oh wow–not one, but two. I heart you, Sofia! Love that you went to great effort to find udon. I was considering making them DIY myself as it sounded like an adventure. One day… So, those pork ribs? Hoo boy, drooling here. And the tofu looks tasty, too. Seems udon and tofu are a perfect match! Thanks again for including me in your alphabet games 😀

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-25 at 09:53

      Looks like we like udon and tofu 😉 I’m glad you like the alphabet game, its fun! xxx

  7. lapetitecasserole 2014-04-25 at 06:42

    You’ve worked a lot in your kitchen, right? both recipes look great, but I prefer the second one….thank you Sofia! Since I’ve tried your tofu with curry recipe you are my “tofu mentor”… it was delicious!

  8. Bunny Eats Design 2014-04-25 at 06:50

    I love pork ribs but I think in this case the tofu udon look yummiest. Add a fried egg on top and I would be a very happy girl!

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-25 at 09:56

      According to the comments, it looks like the tofu one is proving to be the most popular!
      PS I’ve been “away” but I should come, bring a plate and mingle in one of your Friday parties again soon 😉

  9. Mabel Kwong 2014-04-25 at 08:30

    I am not a huge fan of udon noodles but I really don’t mind eating it, especially with kecap manis. I’ve eaten some udon noodles and they were very thick and salty, maybe that’s why. When I do eat udon, I prefer it fried like the recipe you shared. I find eating udon with soup a very messy affair 🙂

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-25 at 08:32

      I don’t think I’ve ever had a salty udon, so I suppose some places overdo the salt! Have a great weekend Mabel! xx

  10. Pemberley Cup & Cakes by Rosa 2014-04-25 at 13:11

    I never heard of these udon noodles. They look great (any dish with pasta in it is). And that honey and mustard sauce always a winner. Great recipe, Sofia, and the most interesting post.
    Have a terrific weekend, my friend!

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-25 at 13:16

      You must find some udon and make something! Though I think in Spain its easier to just go to a Japanese restaurant and order some than looking for them in a shop 😉 The sun is shining here, I hope it is there too. Buen fin de semana, besos!

  11. laurasmess 2014-04-27 at 11:29

    Wow, I never would’ve thought that udon would be so difficult to find in Barcelona! Haha… you must’ve appreciated every little tiny morsel of those noodle dishes! Your cooking looks delicious though Sofia. I’m not a huge fan of udon noodles but I would’ve slurped up every drop of those gorgeous fusion sauces you made. Yum! x

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-27 at 19:46

      Well you can make them with rice or different noodles too! Yeah, I thought I would just walk into any corner store and find udon,.. apparently not! xx

  12. Amanda 2014-04-27 at 19:52

    Yum! Well done! I’ve been looking forward to see what you’d do for a month! This looks great. I’ll have to give it a shot.

    1. Sofia // Papaya Pieces 2014-04-27 at 19:55

      I got to cook for two days with this one 😉 I hope you’ll join us again when you can! xx

  13. Pingback: Spiced Udon Stir-fry (U is for Udon) | Anna's Cuisine

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