Another Easy and Affordable Way to Beat Tsuyu (the Rainy Season)
Two years ago I wrote about one of my favourite summer dishes: "Hiyashi Chuka" - chilled Chinese noodles. It's a summer staple in Japan because it's tasty, light, and refreshing - a perfect meal to beat the season's sultry summer heat: http://www.deepjapan.org/a/3324
As soon as June starts, you can find 冷やし中華 on restaurant menus, convenience store shelves, and in nearly any supermarket. If you can't recognize the kanji, just look for the colourful cold ingredients and a "tare" (sauce) packed with cooked and chilled noodles. Popular toppings include: strips of omelette-style eggs, carrots, cucumber, ginger, ham, and chicken. The tare is traditionally made from water, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, and sesame seeds.
Unlike traditional hot ramen, hiyashi chuka won't leave you feeling like your belly is about to explode. It's a summer staple because of its simplicity: easy to eat, fills you up without overdoing it, and you'll have plenty of new energy to get through the rest of the day.
It's a delicious dish that you should definitely try if you haven't already. Even better, try making your own version at home! All of the ingredients are easily obtainable and cheap - it's fun to do with friends!
And for those who prefer their noodles upscale and xxx, check out the rei-men (cold noodles) at Ginza Aster: http://www.deepjapan.org/a/4399