Chilled Somen Noodles (Hiyashi Somen)

Recipe by Halcyon Eve
READY IN: 50mins


  • Dipping Sauce
  • 1
    cup dashi (Japanese bonito stock, available as instant granules or make your own)
  • 12
    cup mirin
  • 14
    cup soy sauce (I prefer Kikkoman)
  • 1
    tablespoon prepared wasabi (or to taste)
  • 2
    tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
  • Somen
  • 14
    lb somen noodles
  • 14
    cup cilantro leaf (more or less to taste)


  • Make dipping sauce by combining the dashi (or dashi granules and 1 cup water), mirin, and soy sauce in a medium saucepan. Bring just to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Force-cool the sauce by pouring into a medium-size metal mixing bowl, placing into a large bowl of ice cubes and water, and twirling, taking care not to spill, until cooled. (Note: this is an important step; it won't taste right if you just let it cool slowly!)When cooled, refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain, rinse well under cold water, drain again, and place in a bowl of cold water.
  • To serve, place a mound of noodles into individual glass bowls, tuck in a few ice cubes and pour in a small amount of water (not enough to cover; just to dampen). Sprinkle with cilantro leaves to taste.
  • On little individual plates, place a small mound of sliced green onion and a dab of wasabi. Pour some dipping sauce into small individual bowls.
  • Each person can season his or her sauce to taste with the onions and wasabi, then pick up a bunch of noodles (chopsticks really work the best, but you can use a fork, too), allow water to drip back into bowl, dip into sauce, and eat.
  • For a somewhat heartier meal, add some of the suggested additions (in the description above) along with the cilantro leaves when serving. I like to serve this with a simple salad of tomato wedges, sliced cucumber, and either lettuce or Napa cabbage with a Japanese-style dressing.