Udon Soup With Meatballs and Baby Bok Choy 4.000

James M. Thresher for The Washington Post; Tableware From Crate & Barrel

Nourish Feb 11, 2009

Here's a play on a traditional Italian wedding soup. I build a soup with udon noodles and add mini pork meatballs, seasoned like dumplings. Scallions, fresh ginger, toasted sesame oil and soy sauce lend an Asian influence to a low-sodium chicken broth.

The meatballs and bok choy cook right in the broth, and the noodles are done in a separate pot. When they're combined in a single bowl, you've got a lunch or light dinner. For a more substantial dinner portion, double the amounts of meatball ingredients.

Asian supermarkets carry fresh udon noodles that have a limited shelf life, so I prefer to buy dried noodles and cook them myself. Be sure to follow the cooking directions on the package.

-- Stephanie Witt Sedgwick

Servings: 4
  • For the meatballs
  • 8 ounces lean ground pork
  • 3/4 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 scallion, white and light-green parts, finely chopped (1 tablespoon)
  • 1/2-inch piece peeled ginger root, finely minced ( 1 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • For the soup
  • 5 cups low-sodium or homemade chicken broth, such as 365 Low-Sodium Organic Chicken Broth
  • Green tops from 2 to 3 scallions, plus 1 scallion thinly sliced crosswise, for garnish
  • 3/4-inch piece peeled ginger root, cut crosswise into quarter-size slices
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 12 ounces dried udon noodles
  • 2 to 3 (12 ounces total) baby bok choy, each leaf cut crosswise into 1-inch-wide strips, well cleaned


For the meatballs: Line a small rimmed baking sheet or large plate with plastic wrap.

Combine the pork, cornstarch, scallions, ginger, sesame oil and soy sauce in a large mixing bowl. Wet your clean hands and use your palms to form 28 small meatballs (about the size of fat marbles), placing them on the lined baking sheet as you work. Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to cook.

For the soup: Combine the broth, green scallion tops, ginger slices, sesame oil and soy sauce in a medium soup pot over medium heat. Cook for about 20 minutes, adjusting the heat as needed to keep the broth just below a boil. Use a skimmer or a slotted spoon to remove the ginger and scallion pieces; discard them. Let the bubbles return to the edges of the pot.

While the broth is cooking, prepare the noodles in a separate pot according to package directions; drain.

Gently add the meatballs to the soup. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring a few times. Add the bok choy and cook for 7 to 8 minutes or until it has softened and the meatballs are cooked through.

Divide the drained udon noodles among individual large soup bowls, then ladle the soup with the meatballs and bok choy evenly among the portions. Top each portion with some of the sliced scallions; serve hot.

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Recipe Source

From Nourish columnist Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.

Tested by Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.

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