A rich, hearty, and flavorful ramen with coconut milk, lemongrass, and kaffir lime. With notes of lemon-lime, ginger, and star anise.
Coconut Lemongrass Ramen [Vegan]
- 2 tablespoons neutral-flavored oil such as coconut oil
- 1-inch fresh ginger, finely chopped (about 1 heaping tablespoon)
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cups roughly chopped, crimini mushrooms
- 1 vegan sausage or 1 cup crumbled meat substitute
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 white onion, roughly chopped
- 1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed and cut into 2 pieces
- 2 tablespoons miso paste
- 6 kaffir lime leaves
- 4 whole star anise
- 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 6 cups water
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 ramen noodle blocks (about 5 oz.)
- 14 ounce extra firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon tamari or low-sodium soy sauce
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Press and drain tofu. Cut tofu into small cubes and arrange on the baking sheet. Bake for 35 minutes until crispy.
While tofu is baking, prepare the broth. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a deep pot over medium-high heat. Add ginger, garlic, and mushrooms. Crumble in vegan sausage and add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir. Cook until sausage and mushrooms are golden brown and fragrant, about 5-6 minutes. If mixture seems to get a bit dry, deglaze with 1 tablespoon of water.
Use a mallet or rolling pin to whack the core of the lemongrass to bruise it. Add it to the pot along with onion. In a small bowl, whisk miso paste with 4 tablespoons of water. Add to the pot along with lime leaves, star anise, coconut milk, water, and salt. Bring broth to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Season with salt if needed.
Place a mesh strainer over a large glass bowl. Carefully pour broth over the strainer to separate liquid from solids. Transfer the liquid back to the pot. Bring broth up to a boil then add ramen noodles. Cook until ramen noodles are cooked through, about 5-6 minutes.
Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat with 1 tablespoon neutral-flavored oil. Add baked tofu and 1 tablespoon tamari. Give it a quick toss and cook for 2 minutes just to get a bit of a crisp on the tofu and caramelize the edges.
Serve ramen with baked tofu, chopped veggies, fresh cilantro, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.