Tag Archives: chikara

#1919: Maruchan Shiroi Chikara Mochi Udon

Here’s another one that was sent to me by Javier over at Box From Japan – thanks! Box From Japan is a subscription service – you can get a box sent to you every month with some great noodles within! This is an interesting one – looks like they’re mentioning a big Dragonball Z contest or something on it. 2.000.000 somethings are referred to… Hmmm… Not only that, this one’s got mochi in it! Mochi is a doughy kind of substance which can surround jellies or ice cream (my favorite). It also apparently goes well in udon! Let’s check it out!

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, add everything to the bowl and add boiling water to fill line. Let sit covered for 5 minutes. Stir and enjoy!

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

Detail of the obverse side of the lid (click to enlarge).

The udon block.

A dual sachet of dry ingredients.

The soup base.

Some ito togarashi powder.

The block of mochi.

Bits of tofu and kamaboko amongst other thing from the bowl.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion, hard boiled egg and kamaboko. The noodles are wide and flat and had a nice chew to them, lighter than round fresh udon, but nice nonetheless. The broth has a bonito taste along with soy and was pleasingly robust. The bits of tofu were great and the included kamaboko was very large and hydrated nicely. The mochi was not included in the bowl when I steeped it, so afterwards I added it – not correct. However, I threw the bowl in the microwave and quickly I got the picture – amazing! Gooey and almost cheeselike in execution. Definitely worth a try. 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4901990522991.

Chikara Mochi Noodle, Instant Udon, Pack of 12

A Japanese Maruchan TV commercial.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1337: Sakura Noodle Chikara Brand Udon Beef Flavor

Well, today is the last day of the Meet The Manufacturer for Sakura Noodle Inc. It’s been interesting – I don’t think I’ve had udon so many days in a row – I was surprised how much I enjoyed it! One thing that was nice was that there’s only one gram of fat in these, which is a far cry from the amounts I usually have. Anyways, let’s have a look at this one – beef!

2014_3_9_1337_002

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, boil 1 3/4 cups of water and add noodles. Cook for 2 minutes, adding the sachet contents right at the end. Stir and enjoy!

The fresh udon pouch.

The soup base sachet.

A beefy scent!

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added Urashima Sesale & Salt furikake, green onions, and sauteed sweet onion and beef. The noodles are nice and chewy and fresh. Lots of them too. The broth has a very good beef taste; like real beef broth and I really enjoyed it. This was a great one to end on! 4.25 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 078128120214.

As a fitting end to this Meet The Manufacturer, here are cherry blossoms falling in Japan; known as Sakura.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1335: Sakura Noodle Chikara Brand Udon Hot & Spicy Flavor

Today is a good day for spicy noodles. I just did my big walk of the day – something I’ve not been able to do for a week or so – it’s been raining alot here just north of Seattle. A lot. In fact, there was a weather alert for landslides due to so much rain… Sheesh. Walk was good and now I’ve got the pre-season baseball audio going – Giants vs Royals today. I’m a Giants fan – my wife converted me from being a Mariners fan when we got together as she used to play softball and got quite a few trophies. The first year I started following the Giants was 2010, and lo and behold, they won the world Series! Then again in 2012. I think as long as we win the even years, we’re good to go. Anyways, spicy udon sounds really good today and I think I know just what to add to it – Fresno chilli peppers! They’re playing the game today in Scottsdale, AZ, and a lot of their minor league players get a chance to get a chance to be in the roster. Many of them are from the Fresno, CA AAA team. Let’s check these noodles out!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, boil 1 3/4 cups of water. Add noodles and cook for 2 minutes. Add the contents of the soup base sachet just before the end and give it a stir. Enjoy!

The fresh noodle pouch.

The soup base sachet.

A slightly more granular powder than the others thus far.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added corn, jalapeno, Thai chilli pepper, Fresno pepper, sweet onion, cilantro, carrot, thin sliced sukiyaki beef and cheese. The noodles turned out just as good as the last few times; wide, chewy and of excellent quality. The broth had a very nice amount of heat to it and a rich flavor. Very tasty and enjoyable. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 078128123017.

You like it hot? These are the top ten hottest chilli peppers in the world.

Meet The Manufacturer: Re-Review: Sakura Noodle Chikara Brand Udon Shrimp Flavor

I got some really good sized shrimp the other day at the store thinking they’d go really well with this. I like shrimp – they’re tasty! The ones I’ve been getting are frozen and have a thin layer of ice all around them so they don’t stick together. Pretty brilliant – quite enjoyable. Anyways, today it’s shrimp. Let’s shrimp it up!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Comtains fish and shrimp. To  prepare, boil 1 3/4 cups of water and cook udon for 2 minutes, adding the contents of the soup base sachet in the last bit before the udon is done. Stir and enjoy!

The fresh noodle pouch.

The soup base sachet.

Smells a little salty, buttery and shrimpy!

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added shrimp and green onions. The noodles are nice and chewy as always; great quality. The broth is wonderful. It has a great shrimp flavor with a buttery comforting component to it that’s perfection. 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 078128120115.

I don’t get these shrimp at the store, that’s for sure! This is a Mantis Shrimp – the whack it’s giving that clam is equal in force to a .22 calibre bullet!

Meet The Manufacturer: #1334: Sakura Noodle Chikara Brand Udon Mushroom Flavor

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a huge fan of mushrooms. I’ve liked them a little more and more over time, but they’re really not something I seek out and enjoy thoroughly. On the other hand, my wife absolutely loves mushroom.s and savors them. She also really likes udon, so I thought I’d make these for her. Let’s open this bag up and see what’s inside.

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, boil 1 3/4 cups water. Add the noodle block and boil for 2 minutes, adding the contents of the soup base sachet right before the end. Stir and enjoy.

The fresh udon pouch.

The soup base sachet.

Has a kind of miso mushroom scent.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added Enoki mushrooms. The noodles as usual are thick, chewy and very good. The broth was a lot like the Oriental flavor I had the other day but with a light mushroom flavor. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 078128120023.

Here’s a place where they grow lots of enokitake mushrooms!

Meet The Manufacturer: #1333: Sakura Noodle Chikara Brand Udon Oriental Flavor

I asked my wife to pick today’s variety and she picked this one. I was thinking – what is Oriental flavor? Well, the French version tells us. I tried Google’s auto translate and it thought it was Spanish for ‘nice.’ In French, bonito means bonito. So, what does bonito mean? Simple.

bonito

bəˈnētō/
noun
noun: bonito; plural noun: bonitos
1.a smaller relative of the tunas, with dark oblique stripes on the back and important as a food and game fish.

Ah ha! Fish! It’s only logical, really. Fish is a staple all across the world and particularly in Asia. I think fish sounds good today – let’s give this a try!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, boil 1 3/4 cups of water and cook noodles for 2 minutes. Add the contents of the sachet towards the end of cooking. Enjoy!

The fresh noodle pouch.

The soup base sachet.

A light powder.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added kamaboko, sweet onion, chikawa, squid, shitaruba, green onion and Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles have a great chew yet again. Thick and luxuriously hearty. The broth has a nice seafood taste; slightly sweet and smoky. Good stuff! 3.75 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 078128120016.

Here’s an interesting video about bonito processing. Bonito is caught, prepared and smoked. The end product is katsuobushi, and it’s a long involved process.

Meet The Manufacturer: Product Samples From Sakura Noodle Inc

Walked to the apartment office today to pick up a package.

Wow – no wonder it was so heavy! That little box was chock full of udon and yakisoba! Can’t wait to dig in!

Meet The Manufacturer: Interview With Sakura Noodle Inc.

Interview With Sakura Noodle Inc * Product Samples From Sakura Noodle Inc * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Chicken Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Oriental Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Mushroom Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Shrimp Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Hot & Spicy Flavor *

There are many kind of noodles on the market of many different gauges. Udon is a thick and chewy noodle enjoyed around the world, but not often seen in a Meet The Manufacturer. No more! I had the fortune to get an email from Mami Cindy Suzuki, VP of Sakura Noodle, Inc. She agreed to do and interview and send some samples! Here is the interview, and thus, we begin a new Meet The Manufacturer for Sakura Noodle Inc. of Los Angeles, California.

THERAMENRATER>  Thank you very much for agreeing to do this interview! Could we start off with some information about Sakura Noodle; when was Sakura Noodle founded, where and by who?

SAKURANOODLEINC> Sakura Noodle Inc. was founded by Shohachi Suzuki back in 1983. Born and raised in HaMAMAtsu, Japan, Shohachi wanted to bring and share delicious Japanese noodles to the US.

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

SNI> We manufacture varieties of Oriental style noodles. Our goal is to make fresh noodles that are easy to prepare at home or in restaurants and taste great. Our specialty is Udon noodles, which are a thick wheat flour noodle that can be enjoyed in soup or stir-fried. We also make fresh Ramen, Yakisoba, Chowmein, Soba…etc.

TRR> What is the story behind the name?

SNI> Sakura means cherry blossom in Japanese. It is also known as the symbol of Japan. We wanted to be a symbol of delicious food and our name to be easy to remember.

TRR> Is Sakura Noodle involved in the local community around you?

SNI> Yes, at Sakura Noodle, we do our best to be involved with our local communities. Many temples, churches, and missions in our areas use the noodles we donate for raising funds in festivals and events.

TRR> Why do you think noodles are such a popular food?

SNI> I believe noodles are very popular because they’re simply delicious! Why wouldn’t anyone enjoy noodles? Noodles are also easy to prepare, inexpensive yet very filling. Noodles have such a wide variety of choices that you never get bored eating them.

TRR> You are located in Los Angeles, California. Can you tell us a little about where you factory is and life in the big city?

SNI> Los Angeles is the center of everything. We are consistently surrounded by great food and energetic people. We are located next to Little Tokyo which felt like a appropriate place for our factory.

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

SNI> We are actually in the middle of processing and testing out a delicious, Gluten-free, no MSG, Vegetarian Udon and Ramen. We are hoping they hit the shelves by 2015!

TRR> Can you tell us about the different varieties of noodles you produce and how they differ?

SNI> The main difference in the noodles are the size which makes the textures very unique. When the textures change, the flavor of the soup and sauce that goes with the noodles change also.

  • Udon: Thick, wide wheat flour noodles. Traditionally, Udon is enjoyed in a clear fish based broth soup, garnished with green onions, Kamaboko (fish cakes), bean curds and eggs. Yaki-udon is stir-fried Udon, seasoned either soy sauced based or yakisoba sauce. (cooked with cabbage, meat, onion…etc)
  • Ramen: Thin wheat noodle that can be wavy or straight, depending on the soup or origin of the noodles. (Different regions and cities of Japan have different ramen shapes and soup bases)
  • Yakisoba/Chow Mein: Literally means “fried-noodle” and is cooked in sauce. Yakisoba is usually soy sauce flavored and chow mein can be cooked with oyster sauce.
  • Soba: Buckwheat noodles that are typically enjoyed in fish based soups. There is a tradition in Japan where we eat Toshikoshi Soba. Toshikoshi means “year-crossing” and we eat toshikoshi soba to let go of any hardship of the year to a better New Year.

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?

SNI> I understand; noodle lovers like myself would love to eat noodles all day, everyday but health comes first. Noodles contain high sodium, so it’s important not to eat too much. Sodium is mostly in the soup so we recommend adding extra vegetables. If you go a couple of days with mostly noodles in your diet, try switching to rice or bread instead. Try not to eat just noodle and soup but to make sure you garnish with some meat and vegetables.

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

SNI> At this moment, our focus is to make our noodles even better. We hope in the future we can extend our varieties.

TRR> What was your first product?

SNI> Our very first products were Udon. We produced Udon for use in restaurants. Therefore, Udon is still our specialty.

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

SNI> Our noodles are special because unlike other instant noodles, it is fresh. We do not freeze or dry our noodles but have a very long shelf life and do not need to be refrigerated or frozen, ever. What is better than fresh food?

TRR> Where are your products available?

SNI> Our products are available at your local grocery stores and Asian super markets. Many restaurants use our noodles also so chances are, maybe you have already tried our noodles. You can also order them on our website at www.sakuranoodleinc.com. It is very convenient and easy! Like us on facebook to receive a coupon for $10 off your purchase of $50 or more.

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

SNI> I love to be creative when it comes to making my noodles.
One of my favorite recipes:
Makes 1 serving

Ingredients:
1 pack of Sakura Noodle, Chikara brand Udon w/ soup (any flavor will work but Hot&Spicy is my favorite)
Pieces of Kimchi (maybe about 1/2 cup:cut into small pieces
1 garlic clove (minced)
1/4 onion (cut small)
1 1/2 cup of water with chicken bullion or chicken broth
1/2 cup peeled shrimp (maybe about 4 pieces)
small piece of chicken (diced)
1 egg

Instructions:
In a medium pot, turn heat on and add oil. When pot is hot enough, add kimchi, shrimp, chicken, onion and garlic. Cook for about 2 minutes or until brown and soft. Add water and bouillon/chicken broth. When water starts to boil, add soup packet ad mix until completely dissolved. Add noodle and cook for 2 minutes (make sure to mix once in a while to loosen noodles), drop the eggs and enjoy!

TRR> Thank you very much for this opportunity to learn more about Sakura Noodle!

SNI> This was a wonderful opportunity. Thank you very much Mr. Lienesch!

What a great interview! Thanks to Mami Cindy Suzuki at Sakura Noodle Inc.! On with the reviews!

Interview With Sakura Noodle Inc * Product Samples From Sakura Noodle Inc * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Chicken Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Oriental Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Mushroom Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Shrimp Flavor * Sakura Noodle Inc Chikara Brand Udon Hot & Spicy Flavor *

#920: Shirakiku Udon Hot & Spicy Oriental Style Noodle

Here’s one my sister brought me back from Hawaii! Thanks! This one is sort of confusing. There’s a sticker on the front that says Shirakiku. Underneath the sticker says it’s Chikara, and on the back it says it is Sakura. Well, I’m going to figure it’s Shirakiku and that’s that. Udon is an extra wide noodle. Let hit it!

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

The fresh udon noodles.

The seasoning packet.

Sometimes seasonings like this will get a little ‘clumpy’ because of temperature changes. In the end, it dissolves in the boiling water easily.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added kamaboko, onion, some stir fry veggies and some Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles weren’t as I would’ve expected; they seemed a little aloof and impersonal and just seemed lacking. The broth was pretty good – has a decent amount of spiciness and wasn’t too salty. Not too bad but I wish the noodles had been a little better. 3.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 078128123017 – get it here

A video about Sanuki Udon

My son is a huge fan of kamaboko, so he’ll be jazzed when he gets to see this video f a kamaboko factory!

#425: Chikara Shrimp Flavor Udon

So something a little more tame. Shrimp udon! Should be good and tasty I imagine. Fresh noodles are always good.

Yup – just like I figured – one seasoning packet, one pack of fresh udon!

A mound of powdered seasoning.

Click image to enlarge. Gee what a nice looking bowl of udon! Basic, simple, unassuming. The broth was very nice – it wasn’t a salt fest and had a nice shrimp flavor. The noodles were stalwart and chewy. Their character was unmatched. Excellent! 4.5 out of 5.0 stars!

Oh my God how do they put all those vegetable in that?