Ramen noodles are the Japanese version of la mien which came from Chinese cooking recipes for pulled noodles. The dough is easy to make but there are a couple of different methods to making the noodle themselves. One way is to fold the dough onto itself several times then cut the noodle ribbons.
The easier way to make ramen is to use a pasta machine to roll the dough out and cut it. Although a pasta machine wasn't used in traditional Chinese , it makes it easier. To make ramen noodles from scratch, this recipe works great.
Ingredients - 3/4 Cups of Flour - 1 Egg - 1 Tablespoon water - (any dry herb or seasoning you like)
Making the Dough
First start by combining the egg and the water together. Use a small cup and a fork to make sure they are well mixed. Put the flour, the crushed dried herbs, and seasonings into a bowl and make a dent in the middle to hold the water and egg mixture
Add the water and egg to the flour and then combine the two. Start slowly until the liquid is absorbed into the flour then kneed the dough until it no longer sticks to your hand when you pull away from it. Once most of the flour is in the ball, start kneading it on a counter or table so you have more room to work with.
Once the dough ball becomes a homogeneous mass, meaning it is all the same without layers of dry flour in the middle, wrap it in a damp tea towel for 30 minutes. Try to keep it away from heat or sunlight so it stays moist. This step is different than the Chinese cooking recipes for la mien, but la mien is also kneaded for 30 minutes or more, and doesn't have any egg.
Making the Noodles
After 30 minutes, roll the dough out to about half an inch. This will let it be worked in a pasta machine. Set the rollers of the machine to the lowest setting which should have the widest gap between the rollers. Roll the dough once through this setting. Next mentally divide the dough into 3 equal parts and then fold them together like a tri-fold wallet. There should be three layers now. Rotate the dough 90 degrees so the folds you made are on the outside.
Run it through the rollers again and then repeat the folding and rolling once more for a total 3 passes on this setting. Once you have done that it's time to start making the dough thinner.
Set the pasta machine to the next setting down and roll out the dough. Be sure to add a little flour if it begins to stick. Keep setting the roller down one notch and rolling the dough through until you get to notch 3 or 4.
At notch 3 or 4 the dough will be long and hard to work with. Gently fold in half and use a sharp knife to cut in half. Now you have two sheets of dough the same size.
Chinese cooking recipes call for noodles of all sizes but I found rolling until setting 5 or 6 is perfect for Japanese ramen. Thinner noodles are at the number 7 setting. Once you have the desired thickness put on the spaghetti cutter. Keep a little flour in a bowl and cut the noodles directly into the bowl. Toss with the flour to keep the noodles from sticking.