A quick broth for an instant fix on a cold night. By Nigel Slater
Grill, fry or bake 6 plump butchers sausages, until nicely browned on the outside. Pour a litre of water into a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Stir in 4 tsp of dark miso paste. Add 2 whole red birds eye chillies to the pan. Slice the sausages and reserve. Pour away any fat from the sausage pan, then pour in a ladle of the soup, bring to the boil and stir to dissolve any delicious goo stuck to the dish. Tip into the large saucepan.
Put the kettle on, place two or three servings of udon noodles in a heatproof bowl then pour the boiling water over them and leave for a couple of minutes. When they are tender drain and add to the miso broth. Slice a pak choi in half lengthways, add to the broth and continue to cook for a couple of minutes. Add the sliced sausages to the soup, leave for a minute to warm through, then serve. Enough for 2-3.
Even though this a quick fix for a late night, avoid the temptation to cook the noodles in the broth. It sometimes makes for a cloudy soup. The amount of miso paste you need will vary according to brand and your personal taste. Add a small amount first, then taste and continue adding until you have a deep, flavourful broth.
Use the milder, less salty white miso paste if you prefer. Rather than pak choi, use young spinach leaves or mustard greens.