Japanese udon or soba noodles are frequently eaten with a seaweed or mushroom flavored broth. Tonight I made a shiitaki broth after having tried to make a seaweed broth which I scrapped (the broth was too strong of seaweed and I knew the family would not enjoy it). A piece of kombu is the traditional way to flavor the broth, but I only had arame and apparently I used too much of it.
No matter; I started again and simmered some water with shiitaki stems, onion, garlic, tamari and mirin. After about 15 minutes I strained it and used this as the broth.
For toppings I steamed some kale, sauteed the shiitaki caps and diced celery root, and julienned some white turnips. I used the turnips raw since they were young and crunchy and delicious. Some slivers of raw onion and green pepper added some more dimension and dinner was complete.
It strayed a tad from tradition, but it was very flavorful and had a lot of umami (Japanese deliciousness).
tamari, mirin: $1
Total to make 6 servings: