Late-Night Japanese Noodles


This creamy, silky pasta gets salty pops of flavor from fish roe. Paul Qui uses mentaiko (spicy marinated pollock roe), but trout roe or even caviar would be delicious, too.

Late-Night Japanese Noodles
Photo: © Jody Horton
Total Time:
20 mins


  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise, preferably Kewpie (see Note)

  • 3 tablespoons mentaiko (see Note)

  • 2 teaspoons spicy sesame oil

  • Two 3-ounce packets dried yakisoba or instant ramen noodles, flavoring packets discarded

  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil

  • One 7-ounce package enoki mushrooms, bottom halves discarded and top halves coarsely chopped

  • 2 large scallions, thinly sliced

  • 4 shiso leaves, stemmed and finely shredded (see Note)

  • 1 large sheet seasoned nori, shredded


  1. In a bowl, gently stir the mayonnaise with the mentaiko, sesame oil and 1/2 cup of water.

  2. In a large, deep skillet, combine the noodles with the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over moderately high heat until the noodles are softened and the broth is nearly absorbed, about 3 minutes. Add the grapeseed oil, then stir in the mushrooms and scallions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the broth is completely absorbed and the scallions are softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the mentaiko sauce and cook, tossing, just until the noodles are evenly coated. Garnish with the shiso and nori and serve.


Look for Kewpie mayonnaise (which is made with rice vinegar and very popular in Japan), mentaiko and fresh green shiso leaves at Asian markets.

Suggested Pairing

Mild, refreshing American lager.

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