Food & Drink

James St recipes: Easy lunches for teens on study leave to make at home

Niall McKenna's beef ramen
Niall McKenna's beef ramen

AS A family, we are at that stage in the year where the kids are off on study leave. We are not one of those households that has takeaways on speed dial, we like to have a selection of ingredients in the cupboard for the kids to use at lunchtime.

One of these ingredients is noodles – as the kids can experiment and add in any meat, sauce or vegetables they like.

I tend to go to the Asian supermarket on the embankment at Belfast's Ravenhill to stock up on noodles and although it can be expensive to buy ingredients in bulk, it’s cost effective in the long run.

The first of this week’s recipes is beef ramen – it is perfect for using up roast beef or steak that may have been left over from your Sunday dinner.

The second recipe is a salmon, noodle and edamame dish, that is bursting with flavour and a great way of adding more fish into your diet.

Would you like to take your cooking skills to the next level? Check out our cookery classes at The Waterman House Cookery School. It's a fantastic opportunity to learn new culinary techniques or have a fun night out with friends.

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(Serves 4)

1.5 litres beef/chicken or vegetable stock

50g nori

100g mushrooms, cleaned, sliced

1 inch ginger, peeled and grated

3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

100g sweetcorn

4 portions ramen noodles

2 tbsp sesame oil

200g chestnut mushrooms, sliced

1 red onion, sliced

2 peppers, sliced and deseeded250g beef (leftovers can also be used)

4 tbsp oyster sauce

4 eggs, poached

1 bunch coriander, chopped


Place the stock in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the nori, ginger, garlic and noodles to a pot and cook for four minutes (or follow the cooking instructions on the noodles). Add the sweetcorn and keep off the heat.In a separate pan, add oil and fry off the mushrooms, onions and peppers on a high heat until browning.

Add in the beef and the oyster sauce and stir well.

Next, add the cooked mushrooms, onions, peppers and beef to the ramen and stir in well. Place back on a simmer and cook for a further two minutes.

Split between your serving bowls, top with a poached egg and garnish with coriander.

Niall McKenna's edamame, salmon and noodles
Niall McKenna's edamame, salmon and noodles


(Serves 4)

600ml fish stock

400g Salmon

2 tsp fish sauce

2 tsp soy sauce

1 tsp honey

1 tsp white miso paste

150g udon noodles

200g edamame beans

2 salmon fillets, sliced thinly

1 tsp sesame seeds

1 tsp wasabi paste


Start by placing the fish stock in a large pot. Next, remove the skin from the salmon, chop into cubes and add to the fish stock.

Add the fish sauce, soy sauce, honey and miso paste and whilst bringing up to the boil, combine using a whisk.

Once boiling, reduce the heat and place on a simmer for 10 minutes.

Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions, drain and place into your serving bowls.

To the fish sauce, add in the edamame beans and cook for a minute. Next, add the wasabi paste, but be careful, this is hot, so make sure it is to your taste.

Pour the fish sauce over the noodles and top with salmon and sesame seeds.