Restaurant: Ringer Hut
Address: 1072 Saratoga Ave, San Jose, CA 95129
Phone: 408.554.0877

Some time last year, I went back to Ringer Hut and got their “Nagasaki Saraudon”. Like the name says, sara udon (皿うどん) is native to Japan’s Nagasaki prefecture. Sara udon is a Japanese-Chinese dish; a Japanese dish influenced by the Chinese.

From the top, it looks like a pile of vegetables and pork in gravy-like sauce. But when you look on the side, there’s crispy fried noodles underneath!

The vegetables included in Ringer Hut’s sara udon included kamaboko, cabbage, bean sprouts, carrots, peas, corn, and mushroom.

Eating this brought back childhood memories of eating the Cantonese crispy chow mein. My sister and I always fought over who’d get the crispy noodles, because in this case, crispy noodles is always better than soggy noodles!

Sara udon (皿うどん), literally “plate noodles” is a dish native to Nagasaki prefecture, Japan. Consisting of a base of noodles, and a topping of fried cabbage, bean sprouts and other vegetables, as well as squid, prawns, pork, kamaboko, etc.

There are two main varieties of noodles, thinner crispy noodles fried in oil (called pari pari, bari bari, or bari men); as a result this variation is reminiscent of Cantonese-style Chow Mein. Another variation uses thicker Chinese noodles (called chanpon noodles).

The style and thickness of noodles varies between restaurants. Many restaurants outside Nagasaki prefecture serve only thin noodles which has led to the common misconception that the dish is only ever served with thin noodles.

If many people are eating together, it is customary for everyone to take their portion from a single large central dish.

[In Japan, there] are food delivery services (demae) that specialize in sara udon for parties or offices that are working overtime. Sara-udon is [also] served in school meals at grade schools in Nagasaki prefecture.