Tohoku Delicacies: Hiyashi Chuka (冷やし中華, Cold Ramen)

When you think of ramen, I’m sure the image that pop’s in most people heads is the hot soy sauce or miso based noodle soup. However, in the summer when the weather gets to sultry to enjoy such a warm meal, what’s one to do? Sendai, Miyagi came up with an answer and made hiyashi chukka. The kanji in the name means cold Chinese food, but only the inspiration of ramen is Chinese. The stock is a sesame based soup that is mixed with karashi (からし, Japanese hot mustard) and mayonnaise. Cold Chinese noodles are put into this and on top, thinly sliced cucumbers, scambled eggs, wakame (seaweed), bean sprouts, lettuce, and tomatoes. You can find hiyashi chuka in other parts of Japan but the best version is of course found in its hometown.