Yaki Udon is a stir fried noodle dish made with a variation of ingredients, so it’s a great way to clean out your fridge. In this particular recipe, I used scallops and baby bok choy – but feel free to use whatever vegetables you like, such as: spinach, carrots, broccoli, or cabbage. Or other proteins like shrimp, beef, chicken, or even tofu.
When purchasing scallops, you may notice they are generally labeled either ‘wet’ or ‘dry’. Whenever possible, go for dry scallops. They have not been treated with sodium tripolyphospate, a solution that adds moisture to the scallops thus increasing their shelf life. That means ‘wet’ scallops are generally not as fresh and you’re paying for the added water weight. Due to the excess water, wet scallops will also be more difficult brown, no matter how hot you get the pan. Likewise, the additive solution can also disturb the delicate flavor of the scallops.
When cooking scallops, you want the pan to be HOT! Add the scallops to the pan and sear each side for 1 1/2 minutes. Resist the urge to move them around! If you move them before they’ve had a chance to sear properly, they will stick to the pan. Be careful not overcook the scallops – like shrimp, overcooked scallops become rubbery.
Although yaki udon is a Japanese dish, I have combined a number of non-traditional flavors, which goes to show you how versatile this can be – you can really tailor it to your liking. With just a few easy tips, this is a quick and easy meal to prepare anytime during the week!
- ⅛ cup low sodium soy sauce, plus 2 tablespoons
- ¼ cup orange juice, about 1 orange
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- ½ pound dry scallops
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- ½ pound baby bok choy, ends trimmed, roughly chopped
- ⅓ cup beef stock
- ½ teaspoon molasses
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 packages (14 ounces) sanuki udon, (If frozen, boil. If refrigerated, place in a bowl of warm water to separate the noodles. Drain.)
- bonito flakes, garnish
- In a small bowl combine an ⅛ cup low sodium soy sauce, orange juice, lime juice, garlic, and sriracha. Add the scallops and allow to marinate for 15 minutes.
- Remove the scallops from the marinade and pat them dry. In a large wok or saute pan, warm 2 tablespoons of the oil over high heat. Just before the oil begins to smoke, sear each side for 1½ minutes (do not move them around pan once you set them down). Remove the scallops from the pan and allow to rest.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan and heat over medium-high heat until shimmering. Toss in the bok choy and stir fry until bright green and wilted, about 1 minute. Add the beef stock, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, molasses, sugar, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
- Add the drained noodles to the pan and cook over medium-high heat. Cook for 2 minutes, allowing the noodles to soak up the sauce.
- Gently toss the scallops in with the noodles and cook until warmed, about 30 seconds. Plate the yaki udon and sprinkle with bonito flakes. Serve and Enjoy!