One of the easiest things to make at home is broth. Toss vegetables, herbs, and/or spices in a pot, cover with water, then let cook for an hour or so. The result is a delicious liquid that you could easily drink by itself or use in your favorite soups. Usually every other week or so, I make a big batch of broth to freeze (usually in freezer-safe ball jars.) You can also use scraps instead of whole vegetables. Onion ends/peels, carrot peels/tops, and celery bottoms/tops- all work really well.
Now that I’ve convinced you of the curry broth, this noodle bowl is another 10 minutes. The noodles soak up all the flavor you made in the broth and the greens help bring the oomph. This is about as easy as dinner can be (just waiting for the broth is the hardest part!)
A warming broth bowl with hearty noodles, fresh greens, and topped with a hard-boiled egg.
Curry Broth (see note):
- 10 cups water
- 1 large onions, skin on and quartered
- 4 large carrots, chopped
- 4 ribs of celery, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped ginger
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 2 teaspoons fenugreek
- 4 black peppercorns
- 2 whole cloves
- 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 cardamom pod
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric (see note)
- Salt, to taste
- 4 cups broth
- 4 ounces wide udon noodles
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 2 eggs poached, soft-boiled, or hard boiled
- Minced cilantro, for topping
- Lime wedges, for serving
- Crushed red pepper, for serving
- Combine ingredients for the broth in a large stock pot. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and let cook for 45 minutes or longer as desired. I usually like to get the liquid down to 7 to 8 cups. Strain, measure out 4 cups of the broth and save any leftover broth for another recipe.
- Place the broth back in the pot, bring to a boil, and add the noodles. Cook the noodles until just tender then stir in the spinach. Continue to stir, and cover if needed, until the spinach is wilted. Transfer both the noodles and broth to two bowls. Top with your choice of egg and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro.
Tips & Tricks: I know the list of spices is long but it’s well worth it. However, if all these whole spices aren’t on hand, you can use curry powder instead. I usually swap out for 2 tablespoon or so- use to your taste.
If you can get ahold of fresh turmeric, you can substitute about 2″ of fresh for the 2 teaspoons of dried.
Also, for the noodles, I prefer to use a wide pot that can hold the length of the noodles. This helps the noodles cook evenly and you don’t need to waste broth.
Stock up: get the pantry ingredients you will need: Noodles, Spices, Eggs
Given the actual noodle bowl is simple, the swaps you can make are fairly straight-forward.
Mushrooms: It’s rare we have mushrooms on hand but they do provide a lovely umami layer in the curry broth. If you happen to have mushrooms on hand or love mushrooms, add a few to your simmering broth.
Noodles: I love the look of the wide udon noodles but really any type of noodle would work.
Greens: Swap the spinach for chopped chard, kale, or collards. For the heartier greens, I like to sauté them a bit ahead of time.
Over the years, spinach has become my favorite and go-to green. It grows easily, works well raw and lightly cooked, and can easily be the star of the meal or a simple base for other ingredients. I’ll often keep spinach on hand in place of lettuce because it can be added to almost any recipe i make. A few of my favorite spinach recipes: