Asian Pork with Noodles in a White Dish on a Dark Wooden Table

Soba with Slow Cooker Garlic and Ginger Pork

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 6 hr 35 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Inactive: 15 min
  • Cook: 6 hr
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
Soba—and the substitute, ramen—as well as soy sauce, sesame, and ginger are all common in Japanese cooking, but this slow cooker dish pulls inspiration from a wide range of cuisines. Star anise and cinnamon are used in Vietnamese, Taiwanese and Chinese cooking, while sherry is from Spain and red pepper flakes are most closely associated with Italian and Italian-American food—you’ve no doubt seen a jar at your local slice shop.



  1. Season the pork with salt and pepper. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat with the vegetable oil. Add the pork and brown on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  2. Combine the broth, soy sauce, sherry, sugar, sesame oil, red pepper flakes, star anise and cinnamon stick in a 5-quart slow cooker. Stir to dissolve the sugar, then add the garlic, ginger and mushrooms. Add the pork, cover and program to cook 4 hours on high, then 2 hours on low, or 6 hours total on low.
  3. Transfer the pork to a platter, cover and let rest 15 minutes. Remove the mushrooms from the broth and halve them, then return to the broth.
  4. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the soba or ramen as the label directs. Drain and rinse under cold water until cool. Slice the pork. Divide the noodles among bowls and top with some of the broth and mushrooms and a few slices of pork. Garnish with the water chestnuts, chiles, scallions and cilantro.