Author Archives: Hans "The Ramen Rater" Lienesch

Meet The Manufacturer: Deshome Interview

Interview * Product Samples From Deshome * Deshome Aloe Noodle With Spicy Soybean Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Bean Noodle Red Onion Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Pollen Noodles Sesame Sauce & Soy Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle With Basil Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodles Vegetable & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Red Onion & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodle Spicy Soybean Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Vegetable Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodle Basil Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Sesame Sauce

I’ve been contacted by a few companies after the Top Ten List 2013 Edition came out – quite a few from Taiwan.The folks in Taiwan weren’t very happy that none of their products made the list, and so I asked that their companies contact me and send samples so I could try more of them. Deshome was one of the first to respond, and today I’m happy to announce the beginning of a new Meet The Manufacturer with them! I conducted an email interview with Shelley Su, founder of Deshome.

THE RAMEN RATER> Thank you for agreeing to this interview! To start, can you tell my readers about the history of Deshome?

DESHOME> Our company Deshome started the business from the very first farm. From 2000, we started to plant aloe, and from 2006 we developed a variety of aloe products based on the ideas of nature and health. Also, we are very proud to say that we are the first farm which uses aloe as material to apply and develop many products.

TRR> What was the first product you made?

DESHOME> My first product was the aloe noodles, which are added with aloe vera jelly.

TRR> Your company is located in Taiwan. Can you tell us a little about your country?

DESHOME> Although Taiwan is famous for its IT industry, there are many good small and medium sized companies which develop many outstanding products and also enjoy excellent reputations. Our company is located in South Taiwan, where people enjoy the warm sunshine, beautiful sceneries and mild weather through the four seasons. There are numerous agricultural products  produced in this region. Most of the products contain the freshest materials from the seasons. In addition, Taiwan has a very low crime rate and amazing friendly people and many tourist spots that are worthy for visit.

TRR> Can you tell us about the varieties of noodles you make?

DESHOME> My aloe noodles are 100% handmade with nature. They dry out under the sun without any preservatives and are non-fried.  There are three main kinds: the first type has a wavy shape like laces. It has three types of noodles: wide noodles, straight noodles and thin noodles. The second type is one that mixes grains and vegetables but without any aloe vera material, such as bean noodles, rice noodles and vegetables. The third type is instant noodles, it is a small package with sauces that is very convenient.

TRR> What does the name ‘Deshome’ mean?

DESHOME> The name “Deshome” is from Taiwanese, which means that you can have delicious food at home and it is easy and simple. This is my company name. Our logo is “Home Taste” which is also from Taiwanese, which means this food has our home-style taste. The picture that I use in our logo is bamboo. It is one of the products made in this region, and it is very fresh and tasty.  Also it can be used as the tray that we use to dry out noodles. Bamboo symbolizes the diligence and nobleness, I hope we can follow the spirits and be honest and reliable as our life attitudes.

TRR> Your noodle products often contain aloe – what are the health benefits of aloe when in foods we eat?

DESHOME> The nutrients in aloe are well known. Apart from using it in cosmetics, it will make the noodles more elastic especially when we add aloe jelly. So, my aloe noodles are very good for our health, like drinking aloe juice.

TRR> In what countries are your products available?

DESHOME> At present, our handmade noodles are mostly sold in Taiwan, and consumers will be able to  receive our products by online shopping in a short time.  We are developing our sales to Singapore, Japan, Malaysia and Hong Kong. We want people all around the world to taste and enjoy our products.

TRR> In your instructional video, you mentioned a farm where the aloe is grown – can you tell us a little about the farm?

DESHOME> The aloe we add in our noodles is all from our own farm, the aloe we grow is called Aloe Barbadensis. At present, it land is 9700 M. I follow natural agriculture methods and use no insecticides or chemical fertilizer, so my aloe is pure organic. I maximize the value by using it as materials to develop many products, such as noodles, drinks, skin cares, body washes and kitchen cleaners.

TRR> How does your noodle making process differ from other instant noodle manufacturers?

DESHOME> We use the traditional way of making noodles by using sun exposure instead of frying. Due to this reason, we have limitations in our production capacity, because we can only work on sunny days. But we still insist on using this method because this is how we can maintain the unique flavor for the noodles.

TRR> Are noodles the only products you make?

DESHOME> Of course not. Apart from noodles, we also have delicious sauces that are specially designed to match our noodles. Speaking of drink products, we are very famous for aloe flower tea bags.  As for skin care products, we have a line of facial and body washes and kitchen cleaners. Moreover, we are developing more potential products.

TRR> A lot of people are concerned with their sodium intake. How would you recommend people enjoy your product as part of a healthy meal?

DESHOME> Health is very important to everyone. We are also concerned with this matter as our priority when making the noodles.
Therefore, we are very careful when using sodium. As for noodles, we use natural drying methods to preserve them, thus very little sodium is in our noodles. For this reason, our noodles are very healthy and vegetables, meats, eggs are suggested to cook with our noodles, and they will make a very healthy combination.

TRR> Are you involved in in your local community or participate in charities?

DESHOME> We offer many local community women and young people’s educational trainings and share our working experiences. In addition, we offer many working opportunities to our local women and offer free products and donate to some charities and religious organizations.  We also enjoy rummage sales. At the same time, we teach our local elementary students the knowledge of growing aloe and show them how to make DIY aloe noodles.

TRR> Are there any new products coming soon?

DESHOME> We often have new types of noodles and delicious sauces to cater the market. Recently, we are promoting our new spicy noodles.

TRR> When you make noodles for yourself, what do you like to add to them to make them extra special?

DESHOME> I usually add fresh and seasonal vegetables to make dry noodles, and I like to use onions and seafood to cook the noodles in soup. Also, I prefer to add meat sauces, tomatoes and garlics to make Italian style of noodles. When baking noodles, I like to put mushrooms, bacon, cheese and broccoli. I am very creative to try new way of cooking noodles.

TRR> Thank you very much for this opportunity to learn about Deshome and your products!

DESHOME> I ‘d like to thank you for offering us this great opportunity to talk about our noodles. I truly hope that many people will get to know our aloe noodles and learn more about the delicious Taiwanese food through your blog. You are most welcome to visit Taiwan and experience the beautiful scenery and tasty food. You can’t miss it.

With that, we begin Meet The Manufacturer: Deshome.Thanks to Shelley Su for contacting me and sending samples, as well as her daughter for sending tattoos!

Interview * Product Samples From Deshome * Deshome Aloe Noodle With Spicy Soybean Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Bean Noodle Red Onion Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Pollen Noodles Sesame Sauce & Soy Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle With Basil Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodles Vegetable & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Red Onion & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodle Spicy Soybean Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Vegetable Sauce * Deshome Black Eyed Beans Noodle Basil Sauce & Sesame Sauce * Deshome Aloe Noodle Sesame Sauce

Gol Bim Men Recipe – Paldo Bibim Men with Bai-Top Shell

Today, I’m trying a new recipe sent to me by the folks at Paldo! Summer is right around the corner and this cold noodle dish is great to enjoy during the warmer months of the year. It was first introduced on a South Korean TV show on the KBS network called ‘Happy Together’ (click here to see the video). It uses some ingredients I’ve never heard of before, but I’m sure the folks in South Korea are very familiar with them – Cho Gochujang and Bai-Top Shell. Cho Gochujang is a gochujang infused with vinegar. But what’s bai-top you ask? Sea snails! Never had snails from the sea or otherwise before. Thank you to Moses over at Paldo America for sending me everything to make this! Always excited to try something new.

Here’s a video I made of how to create this simple and refreshing dish.

Gol-Bim-Men (골빔면)

Ingredients:

  • Paldo Bibim Men
  • Bai-Top Shell (in the recipe I’m using a can of Dongwon Canned Bai-Top Shell (hot))
  • Cucumber
  • 1 tsp Cho Gochujang (I’m using Ottogi)
  • 1/2 tsp Sesame Oil

Directions:

  1. Prepare the cucumber, slice into long pieces
  2. To prepare the Bai-Top Shell, slice into thin pieces. 5 prepared Bai-Top per pack of Bibim Men works here.
  3. Combine cucumber, sliced Bai-Top Shell, Bibim Men Sauce Pack, Cho Gochujang, Sesame oil.
  4. Add the mixture to the noodles and stir well. Enjoy!

Here’s the finished product (click image to enlarge). This is really quite good! The Bai-Top shell was extremely good – I hadn’t a clue that I would like sea snail! Also commonly known as whelk, it has a chewy texture not unlike clams. These canned ones were in a slightly spicy sauce which was really good. Paired with the cho gochujang, I devoured the leftovers of the can after the video.The sweet and spicy flavors along with the coolness of cucumber and texture of the bai-top all melded together very nicely. Give it a try!

#1071: Nissin Raoh Soy Sauce Taste

Here’s another one from Scott at Nissin. Noticed this was another one that was needing review as it’s a little past its date. Let’s check it out!

Back of the package (click image to enlarge). Not sure if it contains meat.

The noodle block.

Liquid soup base.

Has a nice soy sauce scent with a slight sweetness.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added green onions, hard boiled egg and beef sauteed in soy sauce. The noodles are chewy and plentiful. The broth is well done – full of rich soy sauce flavor and just the right amount of oil. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 4902105107102.

Nissin Raoh TV commercial.

Meet The Manufacturer: Prima Taste Rendang Curry Sauce Kit

I know, thewse aren’t noodles but I thought it’d be nice to show some of the other things that Prima Taste sent. This one’s for making rendang – a spicy curried beef.

Two big packets of flavoring.

Finished (click to enlarge). Used some beef that we got at H Mart that’s usually used for Korean BBQ (the folks at Prima Taste said it’s usually beef that’s in chunks one uses). We had it atop some rice. This stuff was very rich and tasty – lots of serious flavors going on! We really liked it a lot. You can get it here.

A 30 second spot and Prima Taste’s products.

Meet The Manufacturer: #991: Prima Taste Singapore Curry La Mian

Curry. For me, it’s up there with bacon, pizza, fried chicken and dim sum. Curry has this flavor that has always enthralled me and can be prepared in so many different ways. Here we have Prima Taste’s take on curry with their Curry La Mian.

The back of the packaging (click image to enlarge). Notice the ingredients. Also, note the cooking time.

The noodle block – large and circular.

This is a really big packet. There are two packets, A and B.

This curry paste smells so good! I’ve never seen anything like this in any instant I’ve tried before.

Now we have the curry premix – I think that’s kind of funny as I would think that the premix would’ve been labeled as A.

Powdered coconut. Awesome stuff!

Finished (click image to enlarge. Added onions, baked chicken and some white potato. The noodles are of a very nice quality and nicely chewy. The broth is amazing – it has a really nice thickness from the coconut component and a great spicy and authentic curry flavor second to none. This stuff is wonderful; it has a real gourmet feel to it! I definitely have never seen this kind of thing in any instant noodle I’ve tried before – I believe this to be a real game changer. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars easily. UPC bar code 01393406796.

[AMAZONPRODUCTS asin=”B00B5NOQD8″]

A commercial for both the Laksa and the Curry La Mian

Meet The Manufacturer: Prima Taste Samples

Here’s the box that the samples came in…

Six of each…

…of two varieties: Laksa LaMian and Curry LaMian! Really looking forward to trying these!

Meet The Manufacturer: Interview With Prima Taste

This is a Meet The Manufacturer that’s been a long time in the making – and well worth it! Prima Taste is a company out of Singapore that makes all sorts of meal kits and now ‘LaMian,’ which is a line of instant noodle products. Here’s the interview I conducted with them via email.

The Ramen Rater> Thank you very much for agreeing to do this interview! Could we start off with some information about Prima Taste; when was Prima Taste founded, where and by whom?

Prima Taste> Prima Taste was launched in 1999 with the mission of serving Singapore Cuisine to the world.

TRR> For those of my readers who are not familiar with your line of products, could you tell us a little about them?

PT> Prima Taste, an award winning brand synonymous with authentic Singapore food is manufactured by Prima Food Pte Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Prima Limited. Prima Taste range of ready-to-cook pastes and sauces for whipping up more than 100 authentic Singapore and pan-Asian dishes. Building on the strengths and success of Prima Taste products, the Prima Taste concept restaurant franchise was created to serve true Singapore cuisine.

TRR> When I think about Singaporean noodles, I immediately think of Laksa. Do you have a Laksa instant product? What would you recommend pairing with it to make it a perfect meal?

PT> We have our popular Laksa Best Singapore Favourites Ready-to-cook Sauce Kit that can be paired with our Thick Rice Noodle to make a very robust and authentic Singapore Laksa.

You may also wish to try the Laksa LaMian which comes with steam, air-dried noodles made from premium wheat, no added MSG, no added preservatives and no artificial flavouring. Just add your favourite ingredients!

TRR> I’ve never been to Singapore – what is the area of Singapore where you’re located like?

PT> Singapore is a tropical that lies one degree north of the Equator. It is strategically located at the crossroads of Asia, which has helped it grow into a modern city and major centre for trade, transportation and communications.

Singapore’s colourful history began decades ago when early immigrants arrived here to build a better life, bringing with them cultures, traditions from China, Europe, the Malay Peninsula and the Indian sub-continent. Most Singaporeans today are descendants from these immigrants. This diversed heritage has contributed to a vibrant social fabric and while Singaporeans have developed their own distinct identity, they still enjoy the traditional customs, festivals and culinary heritage of their ancestors.

Singaporeans are passionate about food and will proudly proclaim that one if the best things about the country is the food. Singapore food is like its heritage, full of different aromas and ingredients that have come together in a delicious and hearty way. Her famed local dishes feature Chinese, Malay and Indian culinary influences, reflecting the rich mix of cultures that co-exist harmoniously on the island republic.

TRR> Is there a story behind the name Prima Taste?

PT> Certainly, there is. Prima Taste got its name from the parent company, Prima Limited.

“Prima” in Latin means “first”. The Company’s Chinese name “Bai Ling Mai” literally means a hundred-year-old wheat”, signifying our Company’s longevity on a solid foundation.

Prima Taste is managed by Prima Food Pte Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Prima Limited. Prima Food was established in 1992 with its core business in food manufacturing and franchising.

With numerous awards lauding our achievement, Prima Taste is living up to its name.

TRR> Is Prima Taste involved in the local community around you?

PT> We are involved in the local community in the following ways:

  • contributing our Prima Taste products as lucky draw prizes, door gifts, offering percentage discounts to participants and also offering a very special price to the organizers;
  • contributing our products for cooking competitions;
  • conduct sampling (food tasting) sessions at their events;
  • taking up a stall to showcase & sell our Prima Taste products

TRR> From what I’ve read, Singapore has a very hot and humid climate. Are there Singaporean noodles that are served cold?

PT> Typically not a Singapore dish, cold noodles can still be found in some restaurants or food outlets in some hotels.

TRR> Are hot peppers popular in Singaporean cuisine?

PT> Hot peppers like capsicums are sometimes used in stir-fried dishes.

TRR> Are there any new products that will be coming out soon that you could tell us about?

PT> We will be launching 2 more flavours to the range. They are Singapore’s iconic dish – Singapore Chill Crab LaMian and local favourites Fish Soup LaMian.

TRR> A lot of people wonder about the health factors (sodium, etc.) when it comes to instant noodles. How do you recommend people made instant noodles a healthy part of their diet?

A healthy part of their diet would be to consume noodles that are steam, air-dried, have no added preservatives, no added MSG and no artificial colouring.

TRR> Do you make/sell products other than instant noodles?

PT> Yes, we also have a range of Southeast Asian Noodles range.

TRR> What was your first product?

PT> Laksa, Singapore Curry, Hainanese Chicken Rice, Mee Siam & Mee Rebus

TRR> How does the process in which you make your noodles differ from other brands?

PT> Unlike most instant noodles, Prima Taste Lamian is steamed and air-dried.

TRR> When you make instant noodles for yourself, do you add anything or have any recommendations?

PT> For a more indulgent meal, you may add ingredients suggested on the pack. For e.g., for Laksa LaMian, you may add cooked seafood, cooked chicken and hard-boiled eggs.

TRR> Thank you for this opportunity to learn more about Prima Taste and Singapore!

There you go. Thanks to Low Fatt Mun and Mah Chern Wei for making this Meet The Manufacturer come to reality!

Interview * Samples From Prima Taste * Prima Taste Singapore Curry La Mian * Prima Taste Rendang Curry Sauce Kit * Prima Taste Singapore La Mian

#990: Nissin Pan Asian Kitchen Spicy Pad Thai Flavor Ramen Noodles

Found this one while strolling through our new Walmart Neighborhood Market just north of here. It’s kind of like you take a Walmart, make it a Super Walmart and then ditch the Walmart part so it’s just groceries. Found this is the Asian foods section and not with the Top Ramen and Cup Noodle. Kind of weird.

Here’s the bottom of the packaging (click image to enlarge).

Here’s the lid.

The noodle block.

The seasoning packet.

Interesting – lots of stuff going on here!

Liquid seasoning packet.

Looks like an oil. Has a coffee-esque scent.

Garnish packet.

Some bits of nuts to put on top!

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Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sweet onion, green bell pepper, broccoli and shrimp. The noodles are really good here – lots of them and they’re broad. The flavoring is interesting; it’s spicy, a little sweet and then a little off. I thought the peanut flavor wasn’t as expected. The scent of the oil as coffee was actually supposed to be peanut. The sprinkle of nuts on top was a nice littler touch. 2.75 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 070662487266.

Here’s a recipe to make homemade Pad Thai.

#989: GS25 Gonghwachun Jjamppong

This was sent to me by Kristina W. of Arizona – thank you! This one was a toughie to decipher so here’s what I found. GS25 is a chain of convenience stores in South Korea. From what I read on the packaging, this is a product made for them by Paldo. There’s a restaurant in Incheon called Gonghwachun – I think that’s what is being referred to here. Gonghwachun is a famous Chinese restaurant and well known for its Jjajangmyeon. Finally, Jjamppong (also jjambong, champong) is a spicy seafood soup. If I’m wrong, please comment! Anyways, on with the review!

Here’s the back of the packaging (click image to enlarge). From what I see, I’m going with 550mL of water and then cooking the noodles and seasoning powder for 4 minutes. After that, adding the seasoning block and giving a stir.

A nice big brick of noodles.

Powder seasoning.

Spicy flavored seasoning.

A seasoning block!

Seasoning blocks are really cool – they re-hydrate really quickly and have lots of interesting ingredients. This one has a strong fish scent.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added odeng, shrimp, narutomaki, kamaboko and sweet onion. The noodles nice and wide and plentiful. The broth is nice and spicy and has great seafood flavor. This is a real treat – 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 8801128506656

About Jjajangmyeon in South Korea.

#988: Amino Kuchnia Polska Ogorkowa

Here’s another great one sent by Gil & Joe of the UK! This is a Polish variety. What’s Ogorkowa mean? Simple – cucumber soup. I looked around online and found lots of recipes, some using dill pickles and mentioning that pregnant Polish women favored this soup. Well, let’s check it out!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge).

As the noodles came from a long way via postal mail, they got a little beaten up – here’s one of the chunks.

The dry seasoning packet – a pretty big one!

Has a strong dill pickle scent and kind of a taste much like sour cream and onion chips.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sweet onion, finely chopped ham and black pepper. The noodles  are pretty good – nothing really weird, just a nice consistency and chew. The broth is slightly on the bland side, but has a really interesting fill flavor to it I enjoyed. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 5900300545698.

A recipe for Ogorkowa.

The Ramen Rater Noodle News #25

Here we go with the 25th edition of The Ramen Rater Noodle News! I scour the Internet for articles about ramen and instant noodles and bring them to you! Here are some recent stories you might find interesting!

  • Los Angeles Times – Sun Noodle, The Super Bowl For Ramen Chefs – USA – Link
  • RocketNews24 – Girly Noodles: Is Japan Witnessing The Start Of A Female-Oriented Instant Noodle Revolution? – Japan – Link
  • South Whidbey Record – EDITORIAL: Measure Taxes By Top Ramen – USA – Link
  • Bangstyle – Make Ramen Like A MAN – USA – Link
  • Lilburn/Mountain Park Patch – Weird Police News: Ramen Noodles, Chicken Wings And Olives – USA – Link
  • Los Angeles Magazine – This Ramen’s Like Buttah! – USA – Link
  • Free Malaysia Today – Pang Family Sells Stake In Mamee – Malaysia – Link
  • Borneo Post – Welfare Department Gives Cooked Food As Immediate Assistance – Borneo – Link
  • Central Florida Future – Food For Thought: Use Your Noodle With These Ramen Based Recipes – USA – Link
  • Rafu Shimpo – A Revolution In A Cup – USA – Link
  • Capital Press – Wheat Noodle Course Expands Global Market – USA – Link
  • Sacramento News & Review – The Cult Of Ramen – USA – Link
  • Sacramento Bee – Wilton Inventor Uses His Noodle, Gets Cooker Into Safeway – USA – Link
  • YouTube – Steven Jo: Ramen Noodle Soup (VIDEO) – USA – Link
  • Eater – The 129 Hottest Ramen Shops Across America Right Now – USA – Link
  • Root Simple – Annie Hars’ Top Ramen Keyhole Vegetable Garden – USA – Link
  • Ideas In Food – A Ramen Equation – USA – Link
  • The Daily Yomiuri – Packet Noodle Sales Rise On ‘Fresh’ Texture – Japan – Link