A rich, hearty, and flavorful ramen with coconut milk, lemongrass, and kaffir lime. With notes of lemon-lime, ginger, and star anise.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Press and drain tofu. Cut tofu into small cubes and arrange on the baking sheet. Bake for 35 min. until crispy.
While tofu is baking, prepare the broth. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a deep pot over medium-high heat. Add ginger, garlic, and mushrooms. Crumble in vegan sausage and add ½ tsp salt. Stir. Cook until sausage and mushrooms are golden brown and fragrant, about 5-6 minutes. If mixture seems to get a bit dry, deglaze with 1 tbsp of water.
Use a mallet or rolling pin to whack the core of the lemongrass to bruise it. Add it to the pot along with onion. In a small bowl, whisk miso paste with 4 tbsp of water. Add to the pot along with lime leaves, star anise, coconut milk, water, and salt. Bring broth to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Season with salt if needed.
Place a mesh strainer over a large glass bowl. Carefully pour broth over the strainer to separate liquid from solids. See notes for how to reuse the solids. Transfer the liquid back to the pot. Bring broth up to a boil then add ramen noodles. Cook until ramen noodles are cooked through, about 5-6 minutes.
Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat with 1 tbsp neutral-flavored oil. Add baked tofu and 1 tbsp tamari. Give it a quick toss and cook for 2 minutes just to get a bit of a crisp on the tofu and caramelize the edges.
Serve ramen with baked tofu, chopped veggies, fresh cilantro, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.