|scant 1 oz (25 g) package mixed dried mushrooms (shiitake, oyster, porcini), rinsed||2 tbsp soy sauce|
|1 tbsp sesame oil or sunflower oil||2 tbsp Asian fish sauce, such as nam pla|
|2 in (5 cm) piece of fresh ginger, thinly sliced and cut into thin strips||salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|2 x 5½ oz (150 g) packets of fresh thick or medium udon noodles||splash of hot chili oil, to taste|
|4 cups hot vegetable stock|
Put the dried mushrooms in a heatproof bowl, and cover with about 1¼ cups boiling water. Leave to soak for 20-30 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large saute pan over low heat. Add the ginger, and cook for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add the noodles, and stir for a couple of minutes more to break them up.
Pour in the hot stock, soy sauce, and fish sauce, and bring to a boil.
Meanwhile, strain the mushrooms through a fine sieve, reserving the liquid. Add the mushrooms to the pan, and reduce the heat to low. Strain the reserved soaking liquid through a fine sieve again to remove any grit, and pour the strained liquid into the pan. Simmer gently for 20-30 minutes. Taste, and season with salt and pepper. Add a splash of chili oil to taste, and serve hot.
The flavors of this soup develop more if it is made a few hours ahead, then simply reheated to serve.
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