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Homemade Udon

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750 g (1 ⅔ lbs/3 cups) white plain flour
1 tablespoons salt


Serves: 4


Put the flour in a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Dissolve the salt in 250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) water, pour into the well in the flour and gently fold in to make firm dough. The dough should be fairly dry but if it is still crumbly add a little more water. Turn onto a pastry board and knead vigourously until smooth but still firm. Hit it hard with a fist at least 100 times to remove any air pockets and make it an oval shape.

Cover dough with a clean damp tea towel and leave for at least 2 hours. Turn out onto a lightly floured pastry board and roll out, dusting with flour if necessary, to make a very thin, not more than 0.3 cm (⅛ in) thick, rectangular sheet. Dust the surface of the pastry with flour, then fold from both sides into the centre, turn over, dust with flour and fold in half.

Using a sharp knife, cut the folded pastry crossways into 0.3 cm (⅛ in) thick strips. Separate the strands with your hands. Cook in a very large deep saucepan with plenty of boiling water for 25-30 minutes, adding some cold water each time it starts boiling, until noodles are cooked to the core but still retain some crunchiness. Drain and wash well under running water to remove the outer starch from the noodles. This makes about 900 g (2 lb) of noodles.

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