Saturday, December 14, 2013

My Favorite Soba!

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I was watching one of Anthony Bourdain's Japan episodes the other night, he and Chef Morimoto were eating soba at a well-known soba restaurant in Tokyo.  It's been awhile since I've had good soba, not many soba places make their own noodles.  It's hard to explain how good soba is if you haven't had a fresh noodles.

I stopped in my favorite soba shop, Otafuku in Gardena.   I was introduced to this noodle shop about 14 years ago, when their menu didn't have a lot of English descriptions and I usually ordered blind.  Today is a different story, the dining room has expanded into the next store front and the menu now has English descriptions and some pictures.  Regardless, the noodles are made fresh each day and they know how to cook them.  For me, the perfect noodle is cooked al dente.

Otafuku is hidden behind a plain store front with a nondescript sign.  Most of the regulars know that they have a small parking lot and entrance in the back of the building.

See What Jay Eats...

Tsukemono (pickled vegetables), 
tsuyu (dipping sauce),
and condiments (wasabi and green onions) 
brought to the table.

The dipping sauce served here is made from scratch,
not the typical hondashi that others use, 
which is mostly MSG.

Ready to eat...

Mini shrimp tempura bowl
(two shrimp, slice of red bell pepper, and potato) 

It was just the right size for today's lunch.


Seiro Soba Noodles
with dipping sauce

Soba noodles are made from buckwheat
and usually brown in color.
A special white buckwheat flour is used for 
the seiro noodles, made from a polished down 
buckwheat seed.


I do a better job slurping than Bourdain...


Soba-yu
at the end of the meal

A square pot arrives at the table.
It's filled with the starchy water used to cook
the soba noodles.  It's to be used to thin out the
tsuyu and to finish off the meal. 

I enjoyed my noodle lunch
and was happy that I got my soba fix. 


Read my previous soba post, click Here
I just realized, I'm a creature of habit, you'll have to read why...


Otafuku
16525 S. Western Avenue
Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 532-9348

Closed on Sundays





Photos by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats

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