Category Archives: * Book Review

Unboxing Time: ‘Ramen At Home’ Book By Brian MacDuckston

brian macduckston ramen at home Unboxing Time: 'Ramen At Home' Book By Brian MacDuckston

A review copy! Books are awesome! Let’s take a look!

Unboxing Time: ‘Ramen At Home’ Book By Brian MacDuckston

Let’s Have Unboxing Time With The Ramen Rater!

On my initial peep at this book, I was definitely impressed by the photography – lots of tasty pics of ramen and all of it’s varied aspects.

After I did this video and had a chance to give it a thorough look-through, I found it to be full of great info. First, lots of recipes from broths, to noodles to garnishes.

Everything is straight-forward and logical. I think if you folow the directions, you’ll be hard pressed to muck things up.

The author definitely knows his stuff when it comes to ramen as well. Brian Macduckston runs Ramen Adventures – a site steeped in noodles and all things Japanese. He also conducts food tourism outings – specifically tours of Japan with ramen in mind.

If you want a copy, look no further! It’s a great book if you’ve got a yearn to make your own ramen at home from scratch.

brian macduckston ramen at home Unboxing Time: 'Ramen At Home' Book By Brian MacDuckston

Ramen at Home: The Easy Japanese Cookbook for Classic Ramen and Bold New Flavors

Unboxing Time: Discovery Of Ramen Children’s Book

Unboxing Time: Discovery Of Ramen Children's Book

Today a combo – an unboxing and a book review!

Unboxing Time: Discovery Of Ramen Children’s Book – United States

Let’s Have Unboxing Time

I heard about this book a while back. They emailed me and mentioned The Discovery Of Ramen was on Kickstarter. I thought hey – I would like to check out a kid’s book on ramen – so I did a post about it. That was months ago and they’d said they would send me a copy once it came out. Well, they did! I should note I did the video before reading the book – here are my thoughts on it.

The Discovery Of Ramen is definitely a kid’s book. It’s basic enough that a kid can grasp a lot of the concepts within. I like how it goes on a whimsical trip through time (and space) teaching about the history of noodles all the way from early China. They also touch on instant noodles and how Momofuku Ando originally was from Taiwan which I found a realistic touch.

So it’s two kids and a panda named Dao that tells them all about ramen through the ages as well as how it’s made, ingredients, garnish and broths. I will say I disagree with the boy who is not interested in the pizza instant noodle concept but to each their own.

As far as the illustration, it’s pretty neat. Very colorful and inventive. I really liked the picture of Momofuku Ando with a crown on his head as the king of instant noodles.

I would say if your kid is into Asian food, they’ll probably like this book a lot. I haven’t read it to my children as of yet (to be honest, Miles won’t sit still long enough for a book or will try to destroy it before the first page is read), but when they’re ready, I certainly will. I think Miriam might be a little more receptive lol!

Thanks to Immedium for sending this along – by the way you can get your own copy below via Amazon:

The Discovery of Ramen: The Asian Hall of Fame

‘Discovery Of Ramen’ Children’s Book On Kickstarter

I heard about a book coming out soon called ‘The Discovery Of Ramen.’ The book can be found on Kickstarter currently – here’s a little information about this book and what’s special about it:

The Discovery Of Ramen – United States

San Francisco, CA – August 7, 2017 -Immedium, Inc. announces the Kickstarter campaign for its the children’s picture book The Discovery of Ramen. Written by comic book veterans Phil Amara and Oliver Chin and illustrated by the professional animator Juan Calle, this adventure launches the series The Asian Hall of Fame. Dao is an adorable red panda who can travel back in time and place! He befriends the curious kids Ethan and Emma and transports them in the blink of an eye to Asia. Together they (and appreciative readers) have fun discovering how some very cool creations were invented there. If only every school field trip was like this!

This debut story is like Anthony Bourdain meets Back to the Future! Out on the town with their class, Ethan and Emma smell the aroma of a tasty bowl of noodles. They’ve never eaten ramen before. But boy, does it look yummy! Luckily, cute Dao appears! Magically he guides them back in time to discover how ramen came to be!
The trio begins their adventure in 1800’s Japan. They travel from the unpaved streets where pushcart vendors cooked to the growing capital of Tokyo. They witness the rise of instant ramen, cup of noodles, and now four star restaurants and celebrity chefs. Along the way, Dao and the kids visit ramen factories and museums and even zoom to outer space!

Ramen has never been more popular around the world (especially in the USA) and this is the first English children’s book on the topic. As Dao spices up history, children learn fun facts and trek around the globe.

The Discovery of Ramen serves up an action-packed narrative and the dynamic art by illustrator Juan Calle brings noodles alive and off the page to the point where readers’ mouths will water! After digesting this tasty tale, get ready for seconds. Once fueled by a successful Kickstarter campaign, we’ll publish The Discovery of Ramen by December 2017 and then discover more cool inventions from The Asian Hall of Fame in the future!

$16.95 USA, Children’s Picture Book, hardcover ISBN: 978-1-59702-134-0 9.5 x 10, 36 pages

Oliver Chin recently wrote The Year of the Rooster from the popular annual children’s book series Tales from the Chinese Zodiac, Julie Black Belt, and Welcome to Monster Isle.

Phil Amara was an editor at Dark Horse Comics, and wrote The Nevermen, The Treehouse Heroes, and So, You Wanna Be A
Comic Book Artist? He is an elementary school teacher in Boston, Massachusetts.

Juan Calle is the art director at Liberum Donum Studios (Bogotá, Colombia) which creates animation for movies, TV, and
video games. Juan created the children’s book Good Dream, Bad Dream and illustrated The Year of the Rooster.

Soon as I have a copy in hand, I’ll be doing a review. This sounds really neat and with two kids here who are going to be wondering why their dad spends so much time with noodles, I think it could be really useful for me especially! Check it out right now on Kickstarter!

라면 완전정복 저 지영준 / ‘Ramen Conqueror,’ By Ji Young Jun

About a year ago I was contacted by a man in South Korea. He was very interested in knowing my story – he also wanted me to help him and contribute to a book he was writing. He seemed like a nice guy so I figured hey – sounds like fun!My only stipulation was that when done, that he would send me three copies.Well, the book is finished! It’s in Korean and I can’t read it unfortunately, but I’m hoping someone will be able to help me out on that soon.

Here’s a pic of Ji Young Jun, the author.

He included a very nice letter with the copies (click to enlarge).

Flipping through the book

I asked him a few questions – here they are. Also included below is where you can purchase copies.

THE RAMEN RATER> Why did you write?

JI YOUNG JUN> In divided country korea, every male must serve two years of military service.
I also had to serve in the military for two years.
I was drafted into service in 2012, just like another Korean man.
Since the army was disconnected from society, I felt so bored after finishing my duties during the army career.

So I thought about what was interesting.
When I went to the snack bar in the army, there were various kinds of ramen.
I started eating them one by one.
I first learned that there are countless kinds of ramen in Korea.
Then I decided to eat all the noodles that were released in Korea.

So I searched the internet for anyone who specializes in instant noodles.
However, there were only people who introduced ramen for fun in Korea, but there was no one who introduced ramen professionally.

I happened to see a newspaper article at the time.
It was an article that introduced ‘Hans Lienesch’
When I heard his story, I found out he was the one I was looking for.

But in Korea, I wondered why there were no such people as ‘ Hans Lienesch’
Since there are countless kinds of ramen in Korea, it is much more regrettable.
So, I decided to eat countless Korean noodles and introduce them to people.
Since 2013, he introduced instant noodles via blogs and introduced them more aggressively after being discharged from the military in 2014.

Thanks to my steady efforts, Koreans have come to know me and my blog.
(my blog address
The South Korean press interviewed me and invited me on TV.
A publishing company has also suggested writing a book to me.
Thanks to my lucky break, I started writing books since June last year.
And fortunately, a book was published in May this year.

My book name is ‘ramen complete conquest’
My book name come from my blog nickname ‘ramen conqueror piki’

This book is a book aimed at the Michelin Guide in the field of ramen.
The book contains a rating of Korea’s various instant noodles and tastes.
That is the subject of the book.

In addition, books contain the history of ramen, various ways to enjoy instant noodles, and various ramen stories.

So, if you are interested in Korean ramen, I recommend this book to you.
Someday I want to eat ramen around the world like ‘Hans Lienesch’ and I also want to publish books about ramen all over the world.
To do so, I will study hard and try hard.

Hans Lienesch gave me a dream, and also helped me write a book.
Meeting Hans Lienesch was a great blessing to me.

TRR> Where can people buy it {a link would help)

JI YOUNG JUN> My book is easy to buy in Korea.
If you buy books in other countries besides Korea, you will have to use the Internet.

Interpark global page
aladin us page
bandibook us page

Price is high if purchased abroad.I regret that there is no foreign translation yet and that I can not purchase it at a foreign bookstore.

TRR> How long did it take to write?

JI YOUNG JUN> I started writing books since last June. and I finished writing the book in February this year.
After that, I edited the design of the book.
And in May this year, the book was finally published.

The first time I tried to write a book, I had quite a bit of trouble.

Wow – I am truly honored to have been a part of this book! Good luck to you, Ji Young Jun – you’ve got a great book I hope to learn to read someday!

Book Review: Fine Dining With Johor Kaki: 100 Must-Try Johor’s Heritage & Street Food

Book Review: Fine Dining With Johor Kaki: 100 Must-Try Johor's Heritage & Street Food

A couple of months ago, I was sent a new book (click to enlarge) by my friend Tony Johor Kaki! He runs a really great blog and I first found him from his instant noodle reviews. Now he’s written a book – Fine Dining With Johor Kaki: 100 Must-Try Johor’s Heritage & Street Food. Its a really neat presentation of some of  southern peninsular Malaysia’s great foods and where to find them. Here are some words about it from the author:

The 150 page full colour book featuring 100 street hawkers and heritage food in Johor Bahru took one year to produce with the generous support of UMLand and MAGistrate. UMLand sponsored the printing costs and MAGistrate provided the artwork, design, Chinese translation and editorial support.

The 100 street hawkers were curated over a four year period. Over this period, I personally tasted the food at over 1500 stalls and eateries throughout Johor. Many of the stalls are recommended by Johor readers, others are gleaned from Johor foodie community discussions, and the rest are my own stumble upons when I walked the streets and alleys of Johor. I am grateful for all the tips and leads from Johoreans which made this book possible.

Read more:

Let’s look within!

Book Review: Fine Dining With Johor Kaki: 100 Must-Try Johor's Heritage & Street Food

Neat maps and graphics can be found throughout (click to enlarge), showing you where to go!

Book Review: Fine Dining With Johor Kaki: 100 Must-Try Johor's Heritage & Street Food

Here are a couple different places to go (click to enlarge). Great images and info and even QR codes you can scan at the bottom for the locations! This book does one thing for me – it makes me yearn for the amazing food of Malaysia. Thank you very much for sending me a copy and congratulations – you’ve created a seriously in-depth compendium of great food!

A Nice Gift From The Man Who Wrote The Book On Asian Noodles

A couple years ago, I had the opportunity to check out a course taught by Dr. Gary Hou at the Wheat Marketing Center in Portland, OR. It was a short course on making instant noodles and really fascinating. It’s coming up again and as a thank you for letting everyone know about it, Dr. Hou sent me something!

Check it out (click to enlarge) – Dr. Hou literally is the man who wrote the book on Asian noodles! This looks really interesting; I’m not just interested in tasting instant noodles, but have always been fascinated by the workings of the instant noodle factory and the science behind instant noodles as well. This looks to be pretty in-depth and technical. Once I’m done reading it, I’ll share my thoughts! If you are looking to get a copy, find it here.

A note inside the book (click to enlarge). Thank you! I hope to make it down again!

He signed the book, too (click to enlarge)! Thank you very much! Looking forward to reading!

A Gift From My Wife: Prison Ramen

My wife got me a gift off of Amazon. She didn’t say what it was. I immediately mentioned I’d emailed a publisher of a book asking for a review copy. Then I got the look.

She got me the new Prison Ramen book! I saw this recently and have really been wanting to review it. Since it’s been a week, I’m guessing the publisher didn’t feel like replying to my review copy request (they probably figured I was asking from a corrections facility or something). I’ll be reviewing it soon – from what I’ve seen so far of it, it looks great! I put a link below so if you want to check it out before I review it, you can get a copy. Thank you, Kit! I’m the luckiest guy in the universe 🙂

Prison Ramen: Recipes and Stories from Behind Bars

Book Review/Interview: The Noodle Narratives: The Global Rise Of An Industrial Food Into The Twenty First Century

A month or so ago I read an article mentioning a new book about instant noodles. Books regarding instant noodles generally fall into a couple categories: recipe books written and published by individuals and recipe books that are mass-produced and published by the millions.

The Noodle Narratives doesn’t fit into either of these categories. It is a very direct and immersive stroll into the world of the instant noodle, meticulously researched and presented by three professors of anthropology.

The book starts out with description of the manufacturing process, what the ingredients are and their impacts on the body, environment and humanity. The book focuses then on three regions and how instant noodles are seen, tasted and marketed. First, Japan – the birthplace of instant noodles. Next stop is the United States, and finally Papua New Guinea.

Next, the book visits the concept and reality of mass-produced foodstuffs; the flow from concept to production, and finally the table.

This book was fascinating; it contained a wealth of information the authors gathered and experienced throughout 4 years of research on people, food, environment and economy.

If you’re looking for a cookbook, this isn’t for you, but if you’re looking for an opportunity to learn about instant noodles and how they affect the world, The Noodle Narratives is a great read.

I conducted an interview with Professor Deborah Gewertz, co-author of The Noodle Narratives.

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