20 June 2017

Soba Making Class by Soba Master Yoshinori Shibazaki of Shimbashi Soba

Last Saturday, I was very blessed to be invited by RE&S Enterprises (through Food News), to a Soba Making Class by Soba Master Yoshinori Shibazaki, founder of Shimbashi Soba.

Of all the Japanese noodles, my favourite is buckwheat soba and I eat the Seiro version/Zaru Soba (chilled dipping soba) quite often due to our hot weather here. And when the weather is chilly, I love to tuck into a hot bowl of Yasai Soba (soba noodle soup with Japanese mountain vegetables). Besides, soba is low in calories and rich in vitamins, minerals, amino acids and protein, definitely a health food with anti-aging benefits!

Of all the restaurants serving buckwheat soba in Singapore, my favourite has got to be Shimbashi Soba as their buckwheat flour is freshly milled using a Japanese stone mill at the restaurant daily; noodles are freshly made and freshly cooked.

So when I received the invitation, I jumped at the opportunity. How often do you get to learn from a Soba Master with 45 years of experience making soba?

 Received a set of notes with details on soba, utensils required, making process, cooking and serving soba.

This is how buckwheat looks like, it can actually be eaten on its own without milling into flour, and sometimes it's one of the grains added to Japanese ten-grain rice.

Chef Yoshi started off by explaining the origins of buckwheat flour used by Shimbashi Soba, followed by the process of adding water and kneading the dough.

Next are the processes of pressing, flattening, rolling and folding. He made everything looked so easy.

And finally cutting. With 45 years of experience under his belt, I'm certainly in awe of his knife skills.

Look at how even and neat his soba noodles are.

Now it's my turn to do it! Utensils or tools needed for home kitchen.

So here we go. Adding water to the wheat and buckwheat flour mixture, mixing them up into crumb-like texture, bringing mixture together and finally kneading into dough.

Pressing the dough and flattening into round shape, using rolling stick to flatten the dough till even and square shape, and finally folding and cutting. It's not easy to cut the dough into even thickness of the correct size, some could be too thick like thin udon, some could be too thin like beehoon!

Here's me, trying my best to cut the dough into even thickness.

 Can pass?

Leftover or unwanted bits and pieces of soba can be deep-fried and made into Age-soba (soba chips) which is really crunchy and very addictive. Some restaurants in Japan actually serve this as a side-dish for customers to enjoy with beer.

There's also a demo of how to fry tempura (commonly eaten together with soba) and how to cook the soba noodles properly.

We got to eat the soba noodles that was freshly made by Chef Yoshi during his demo. The noodles tasted so good, it had a bite and subtle fragrance to it, and I love the soba tsuyu (dipping sauce) which had a deep and rich bittersweet taste.

And to round off the meal, a drink of Soba-Yu (Soba water) which is leftover tsuyu mixed with water that was used to cook the soba noodles. Much of the nutrients contained in soba are water-soluable, so the water used for cooking soba is said to be highly nutritious, even more so than soba itself!

I'm now a proud member of Shimbashi Soba Making Club and entitled to purchase soba flour set from Shimbashi Soba for home-use. Yay, I'm definitely going to make soba noodles at home from time to time.

For those interested in the Soba Making Class by Soba Master Yoshinori Shibazaki, I'm pleased to share that there will be three more classes upcoming in the month of August, October and November!

  • 19 August 2017 (Saturday)
  • 14 October 2017 (Saturday)
  • 18 November 2017 (Saturday)
Duration: 11am to 1.30pm
Participation fee: $50 (adult), $30 (children aged 6 to 12)

Registration email: harumi.kawai@res.com.sg
Note: Registration opens one month prior to each session, each session is limited to 10 pax

For those who just wish to enjoy an authentic meal of soba and other Japanese food, Shokutsu Ten Japanese Food Street (currently at Jurong Point and Nex) is opening its third venue at Great World City with a total of five F&B and retail brands, including Shimbashi Soba's second outlet (the first at Paragon), Ami Ami (Seafood, Tempura and Robatayaki), Men-ichi Sappora Ramen (miso ramen), Ichiban Boshi and Kuriya Japanese Market!

Wow, I'm going to be spoilt for choice the next time I go to Shokutsu Ten Japanese Food Street at Great World City :)


  1. Hi!

    I chanced upon your blog searching for soba making classes in singapore. Do you know if Shimbashi still organizes these classes here?


    1. Hi Freddy, I should think so. Since they are still selling soba flour to members. Probably you like to send them an email to enquire?