Family Favorite: Somen for Dinner (Janchi Guksu)

Somen is one of my son’s favorite dishes I wanted to make for him before he left for college. I grew up eating hiyashi (cold) somen for lunch, often on a hot summer day. I loved this simple and refreshing meal. I would have it with a cold tsuyu dipping sauce and topped with green onions and sometimes with a slice or two of kamaboko. My son loves this dish even more than me–without the green onions or kamaboko. My husband grew up eating and loving a Korean somen dish with a warm broth and yummy toppings like salted cucumber, kimchi, fried egg, and shoyu pork.

When I make somen for dinner, I prepare two sauces so that my son and daughter who enjoy the Japanese tsuyu can have it their way and my husband who likes a warm, Korean-style broth can have it his way. For the warm broth, I just boil some powdered dashi in water and add some shoyu and mirin to the mixture.

I prepare a variety of side dishes and let everyone put what they want in their bowls. On this evening, the toppings were egg, kimchi, shoyu pork, salted cucumber, green onions, shishito peppers, and a variety of pickles.

The green onions, cucumber, bitter melon, and shishitos were from my garden.

I love being able to use my homegrown produce in my meals. Living Hilo Style.

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