Tag Archives: chikin ramen

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi – Japan

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi - Japan

Today we have a Zenpop.JP variety – so what’s Zenpop? They’re a subscription service for all things Japanese! Definitely, check them out. By the way, use coupon code RAMENRATER to get $2 off! Here’s what they had to say about this one -“Chikin Ramen is the very first instant noodles in the world. It was invented by Momofuku Ando in 1958, and it is said that instant noodle is one of the greatest invention in 20th century. We definitely think so! This year is the 60th anniversary of Chikin Ramen, so enjoy the classic instant noodle to celebrate it!”

For my 2000th review, I tried the standard sized version. Let’ check out this tiny one!

Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi – Japan

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains chicken. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line. Cover for 3 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi - Japan

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi - Japan

The little noodle block.

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi - Japan

A freeze dried ingredients block!

Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion and sesame seeds. The noodles are soft and thin. The broth interacts with them very well and has a sesame chicken kind of taste to it. Bits of egg and chicken are throughout – thin and wispy. Brings me back. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.  JAN bar code 49698541.

#3135: Nissin Chikin Ramen Mini Donburi - Japan

Nissin Chicken Ramen bowl 85g ~ 12 pieces

Watch me whip this up on Instant Noodle Recipe Time!

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

Found this one up at Osaka market at Yaohan Centre in Richmond, B C. I’ve always been a fan of Chikin ramen – it quite literally was the second instant noodle I tried as a kid. I’ve never had it like this, though! So this is an instant rice, but it has chikin ramen flavor. Let’s take a look at this crossover.

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice – Japan

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

The distributor/import sticker (click to enlarge).

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains pork, chicken and seafood. The prepare, add boiling water to fill line and cover for 4 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

Finished (click to enlarge). This didn’t come out as I expected whatsoever. I expected a cup of fluffy rice and a nice flavoring and bits here and there. This was more along the lines of a rice soup – rice in a Chikin Ramen broth. While not bad, not my favorite. The rice was a little flat – seemed like it should have hydrated further. The broth had that nice Chikin Ramen taste which I enjoyed. The included bits were throughout and hydrated well;. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902105945568.

#2899: Nissin Chikin Ramen Rice

Nissin Chicken Ramen Noodle 85gx5pcs

Looks like a spicy one – definitely need to give this a shot

#2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

Here’s one I found up in Canada that I was going to show during the Momofuku Ando Day #7 video, but it was already running way too long and so I skipped it. This looks to be a regular chikin ramen with soy sauce flavor – let’s look inside and see what we have here.

Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor – Japan

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Unsure whether it contains meat. To prepare, add 230ml to a skillet and bring to boil. Add noodle block and and sachet cook until water is absorbed. Finally, stir and enjoy!

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

The holy dream in all it’s glory; the chikin ramen noodle block.

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

A seasoning sachet.

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

Interesting.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added egg. This really reminds me of my childhood. Noodles are light and flavorful without being a salt explosion. Classic, simple, and distinguished. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code  4902105104583.

 #2797: Nissin Chikin Ramen Shoyu Flavor

Nissin Chicken Ramen Noodle 85gx5pcs

A 50th anniversary TV spot for chikin ramen – this is year is the 60th anniversary of the birht of the instant noodle

Meet The Manufacturer: #2000: Nissin Chikin Ramen Donburi

Well folks, here we are. Review #2000! I recommend that you all start by reading the interview I conducted with Nissin Japan before proceeding.

I created a special video to accompany this post – check it out!

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains chicken products. To prepare, open lid and add 410ml boiling water. Cover and let steep for 3 minutes. Stir and enjoy!

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

The seasoned noodle block.

A large freeze dried block of egg and spring onion.

Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles hydrated perfectly and are the exact gauge and texture I remember having as a child. They’re salty and have a sesame chicken flavor. The egg block really expanded nicely – scrambled egg and spring onion are everywhere and in great quantity – no measly portion here. The broth is very tasty, again withe the sesame chicken taste. This was a bowl I’ve been wanting to try for many years and this is the perfect 2000th review. A taste of my childhood. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902105002605.

Nissin Chiken Ramen bowl 85g ~ 12 pieces

Meet The Manufacturer: Interview With Nissin Japan

Interview with Nissin Japan * Product Samples From Nissin Japan (1) * Product Samples From Nissin Japan (2) * Nissin Cup NoodleNissin Cup Noodle Milk Chikin RamenNissin Cup Noodle Light RatatouilleNissin Raoh TonkotsuNissin Gyoretsu-no-Dekiru-Mise-no- Ramen (Shrimp Tantanmen)Nissin Cup Noodle Big Cheese Mexican ChiliNissin Cup Noodle Pasta Style Tarako SpaghettiNissin Cup Noodle Vegeta Buta-kyabetsu TonkotsuNissin Men Shokunin ShoyuNissin Curry UdonNissin Chikin Ramen DonburiNissin BIG Cup Noodle Seafood Clam ChowderNissin Cup Noodles Tom Yum Goong * Nissin Raoh Rich Miso Flavor * Nissin Donbei Dashi Shoyu Yakiudon

I gotta say, I’m absolutely thrilled to be able to bring you this Meet The Manufacturer. The first instant noodles I tried as a child were Nissin Roasted Ramen, a product for the US market manufactured by Nissin USA. When it eventually left the market, my family brought me to Seattle and after speaking with the people at Uwajimaya, a large Japanese supermarket there, found that Roasted Ramen was almost identical to Nissin Chikin Ramen. I also saw all sorts of different varieties available and I was immediately fascinated. Today, I am on the cusp of my 2,000th review. To be able to do a series on Nissin Japan’s products is just fantastic and really looking forward to sharing this with everyone. To get started, I conducted an inter view with Mr. Daisuke Okabayashi, Assistant Manager of the Corporate COmmunications Division at Nissin Foods Holdings in Tokyo, Japan.

THE RAMEN RATER> Thank you very much for the opportunity to conduct this interview. Can you give my readers some background on Nissin Japan; what is the history of the company?

NISSIN> Nissin Foods Group is the pioneer of instant noodles. Momofuku Ando, the founder of Nissin Food Products, invented the world’s first instant noodles, “Chicken Ramen” in 1958. While instant noodles have their roots in Japan, today instant noodles have grown to the “Global Diet” consumed over 100 billion servings per year throughout the world. Following the invention of instant noodles, Mr. Ando also developed the world’s first cup-type instant noodles, “Cup Noodles” in Japan in 1971. And now, Cup Noodles are sold in over 80 countries ­in Asia as well as in Americas, Europe, and other continents around the world.

TRR> Why the name Nissin – what does it mean and how was the name arrived at?

NISSIN> “Nissin” means “creating fine flavors daily with pure mind,” which was made in accordance with Momofuku Ando’s motto.

TRR> For my readers who might not be familiar, can you introduce them to some of your product lines?

NISSIN> We have some well-known brands in Japan including, Chicken Ramen, the world first instant noodles, Cup Noodles, the world first cup-type instant noodles, Nissin-No-Donbei, Japanese udon-type noodles, Nissin Yakisoba U.F.O., fried noodles, and so on.

TRR> Nissin Raoh was introduced as being ‘restaurant quality,’ with a marketing campaign involving opening small restaurants serving the ramen. Can you tell a little about how that came to be and what it’s effect was on public reception?

NISSIN> As Raoh is popular for its fresh-like noodle texture, Nissin opened a noodle restaurant called “Raoh Fukuromen-ya” in Shibuya station in Tokyo in 2012, serving Raoh noodles as its menu. Thankfully is very popular until now.

TRR> Nissin’s first product, Chikin Ramen was invented by Mr. Ando. He also invented the cup noodle and space ram – noodles for astronauts. while these are well known successes by Mr. Ando, are there some not-so-well-known inventions we might learn about?

NISSIN> One of the most innovative but unknown products invented by Momofuku is “Cup Rice.” There were pilaf, dried curry, etc., which can be cooked instantly and be read-to-eat by just pouring boiling water. Those products went on sale in 1975, but didn’t make a big hit. However, the production technologies used in Cup Rice are now taken over by some of our latest brands, such as “Cup Noodles Gohan” or “Curry Meshi,” microwave-cooking instant rice products.

TRR> On the topic of Chikin Ramen, is there a story behind Hiyoko-Chan, the lovable little character adorning the packages?

NISSIN> Hiyok-chan, the chick mascot character of Chicken Ramen, has 12 friends. He is full of curiosity, has a strong sense of justice, and also always keeps on good terms with human children.

TRR> On the Chikin Ramen varieties – they say WFP next to a picture of a smiling coffee mug – what does it mean?

NISSIN> The red-cup character is the mascot of WFP red cup campaign in Japan.
Red cup is the cups with which the UN WFP is donating and distributing foods to the needy children in the poor area in the world.
You can see details of the red cup campaign by UN WFP on the link as follows;
http://www.wfp.org/videos/red-cup-campaign

TRR> How about the character on Nissin’s Demae Ramen – how did he come to be and what is his name and cultural significance in Japan?

NISSIN> The mascot character of Demae Itcho ramen is called Demae-boya (boy). His family consists of 5 people, father, mother, grandmother, Demae-boya, and younger sister.

TRR> Mr. Ando also founded WINA, the World Instant Noodle Association, which was how this Meet the Manufacturer came about. What was the idea behind an instant noodle association and what did Mr. Ando hope to accomplish?

NISSIN> Promoted by Momofuku Ando, the inventor of instant noodles, and agreed to by a number of instant noodle manufacturers around the world, IRMA (International Ramen Manufacturers Association) was launched in 1997. The purposes of the Association are to improve the quality of instant noodles and increase its consumption through the mutual exchange of information by manufacturers around the world, to discuss environmental and technical issues, and to promote mutual friendship, thereby enhancing diets worldwide and contributing to the development of the industry.
IRMA changed its name in February 2007 to “WINA (World Instant Noodles Association)” to comply with the category name “Instant Noodles,” certified as the authorized name under CODEX International Standards for Instant Noodles, which was adopted in the previous year.

TRR> What, in your opinion, is the biggest innovation regarding the instant noodle since its’ inception?

NISSIN> In my opinion, the invention of Cup Noodles was the biggest innovation in the instant noodle history. The functions of the cup are not only packaging noodles, but also a cooker, and a cup for eating. What is most innovative is that there are three functions in one cup. And I think this invention triggered to turn local Japanese instant ramen into the truly global food, instant noodles.

TRR> On the subject of Cup Noodles – I sometimes will see products referring to themselves as Cup Noodle (singular) and Cup Noodles (plural). Why is this?

NISSIN> When Nissin Food Products Company (Japan) originally launched Cup Noodle in 1971 in Japan, we named the product, “Cup Noodle,” singular noun. After few years, when we made inroads into US market, we decided to use “Cup Noodles,” plural noun, cause “Cup Noodle” is not grammatically correct in English (we don’t eat one single noodle in a cup). Now we are still using “Cup Noodle” in the Japanese market, and “Cup Noodles” in other countries, cause each customers are familiar with each brand name.

TRR> I should let everyone know – there is an amazing place my family hopes to visit in Yokohama – The Cup Noodles Museum. Here, you can see the history of the Cup Noodle – even make your own personalized Cup Noodle (honestly a dream of mine for years). Check it out at http://www.cupnoodles-museum.jp/english/index.html

TRR> Is Nissin Japan involved in contributing to relief of natural disasters and humanitarian work?

NISSIN> Yes, we did a lot of CSR activities by donating instant noodles as the relief food to the disaster-hit area. For example, in the Great Hanshin-Awaji earthquake in 1995, we delivered one million servings, and in the Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami in 2011, we did two million servings to the evacuation shelters.

TRR> Nissin’s iconic Cup Noodle line has had such unique varieties as ‘Red Shock,’ ‘GooTa Demi-Hamburg-Men’ and more. How do you decide whether to or not to roll out a new product, especially when going for something very different?

NISSIN> First, marketing team and R&D team come up with the idea of new products, set the marketing plan, and then develop the product. Then the final approval for selling the product in the market should be met at the new product meeting where CEO joins.

TRR> Out of curiosity, how many unique varieties of Cup Noodle have come on to the market since its inception in 1971?

NISSIN> I can’t tell you the actual number of Cup Noodles which have come on to the market since inception in 1971, because they are too many to count. I can say, more than 100 items have already marketed even only in the regular-sized Cup Noodles category in Japan.

TRR> Mr. Ando’s son Koki is now the head of Nissin Japan. I wonder – what is his favorite instant noodle variety and does he take part in the development of new products?

NISSIN> Mr. Koki Ando, our CEO, is still involved in developing almost all the new items. So I am sure that he loves everything of Nissin’s products. But I once heard that his favorite one was our original Chicken Ramen.

TRR> What kind of impact has Nissin Japan’s products had culturally and socially in Japan as well as around the world?

NISSIN> Since instant noodles can be prepared in only about 3 minutes, it contributed to having people save their time, and thus created some extra time for people to do something instead. In that sense, Nissin Foods, as the pioneer of instant noodles, have made a strong impact on not only the culinary habit but the people’s lifestyle.

TRR> People have become wary of the instant noodle’s sodium content in past years – how can one make the instant noodle part of a healthy diet?

NISSIN> In Japan, we display on the package the amount of salt contained in each product separately for noodles and toppings, and for seasoning (soup). So if some people who are conscious about the salt intake, they can reduce the excessive amount of salt by leaving the soup in the cup instead of drinking all of them.
And I also recommend people take foods well-balanced by combining instant noodles with some vegetables.

TRR> A big part of Nissin Japan’s marketing is through television commercials, often showcasing musical and acting talents from around the world. Can you speak on how a talent is sought out and how these commercials have changed over the years?

NISSIN> TV commercials are always created very carefully to covey the brand concept to the consumers. And, of course, the talents were also carefully decided. They are the brand ambassadors delivering the message.

TRR> In a world with a population that is growing exponentially, what role do you see the instant noodle having?

NISSIN> Since instant noodles have a lot of distinctive features such as, tasty, preservable, easy to prepare, affordable, and safe, and the global population is still expanding, we think instant noodles will become more important and indispensable in people’s diet.

TRR> Where in Japan are you located? What is life like there?

NISSIN> Our headquarters are located in Tokyo, so I live in the outskirts of Tokyo. Living in Tokyo is very convenient but it is very hard to commute by the packed train.

TRR> How many instant noodles does Nissin Japan produce every year?

NISSIN> Only by Nissin Food Products in Japan, more than 350 new items are launched every year.

TRR> We are two years from the 60th anniversary of the first instant noodle product on the market. What is the future of this foodstuff?

NISSIN> Since instant noodles have a lot of distinctive features such as, tasty, preservable, easy to prepare, affordable, and safe, we expect that the total demand of instant noodles will increase steadily in the future.

TRR> I would like to say thank you very much for the opportunity to do this interview – to be honest, I’ve wanted to do this for a very long time, and the occasion of my 2,000th review seems about perfect. My last question: my life has been forever changed by Momofuku Ando’s invention of the instant noodle and introduction to the marketplace. Do you have any stories of others who have had their lives changed by the instant noodle?

NISSIN> I am sorry but I don’t know anybody whose life has been completely changed by instant noodles (other than you), but I know there are some instant noodles aficionados in the world like you. We will continue to responsible for providing many noodle fans with tasty and good-quality instant noodle products.

THE RAMEN RATER> Thank you very much for this opportunity to learn more about Nissin Japan, for myself and my readers!

I want to thank Mr. Okabayashi from Nissin Japan for granting this interview and sending samples as well as so much helkp with translation and other info! I also want to thank Ms. Yuko Shozawa from WINA (World Instant Noodles Association) for connecting me with Nissin Japan. With that, thus begins the Nissin Japan Meet The Manufacturer!

The Ramen Rater’s 3rd Annual Momofuku Ando Day

Momofuku Ando (安藤 百福) – (March 5, 1910 – January 5, 2007)

Today is January 19th, 2014 – and you know what that means? Momofuku Ando Day! In 1958, Momofuku Ando invented the very first instant noodles and started Nissin Foods. I do a special video every year to commemorate the occasion (see below). First, here’s what the Nissin Foods USA website has to say about the man:

Nissin founder, Momofuku Ando, has always instilled a sense of commitment and quality in Nissin products. Today, Nissin’s corporate philosophy inspires this same commitment to taste, convenience, and quality. Mr. Ando began the company as part of a humble family operation back in 1948. Faced with sparse food sources after World War II, Mr. Ando realized that a quality, convenient ramen product would help to feed the masses. His goal was to create a satisfying ramen that could be eaten anywhere, anytime. In 1958, Nissin introduced “Chicken Ramen”, the first instant ramen. Ironically, it was considered a luxury item, since Japanese grocery stores sold fresh Japanese noodles (udon) at one-sixth the cost of Mr. Ando’s new food concept.

Still, Mr. Ando was convinced that his revolutionary new method of preparation would sell. The concept seemed simple enough. All users would have to do is simply remove the ramen from its package, place it in a bowl, add boiling water, cover the bowl, and wait three minutes. The conservative Japanese food industry, however, rejected the product as a novelty with no future. They had never been so wrong.

Soon, Chicken Ramen was selling beyond even Mr. Ando’s wildest expectations. Before you could say “instant”, more than ten companies were rushing to put their own versions out on the market. By the end of 1958, grocery shelves were crowded with this new staple for the Japanese kitchen. From this point on, Nissin Foods began introduction of a long list of successful and innovative ramen products.

Today, there are hundreds of instant noodle manufacturers in the world, creating new varieties of every flavor imaginable!

You may be wondering: why January 19th? Here’s what Wikipedia had to say about Momofuku Ando Day:

Momofuku Ando Day was established January 2007 at a small hospital in Dallas, Texas. Recognizing the genius life of the man whose product has fed billions, a group of healthcare workers first celebrated the day on January 19, 2007. Each participating employee brought several packages of favorite ramen flavors to a banquet table from which employees could sample. The second year, January 2008, participating employees developed unique dishes using ramen as the prime ingredient. The Day also kicked off the “It Starts With Me” campaign promoting charitable giving and customer service. Unfortunately, the hospital was corporately closed in June 2008. In January 2009, several of the transferred employees continued Momofuku Ando Day by sharing it with their new coworkers at a sister facility. Understanding that ramen has been a staple food for victims of disaster and the poverty-stricken, as well as for college students and those wanting a quick meal, Momofuku Ando Day became an endeavor to help feed those in need by fundraising for charitable organizations, or simply calling attention to poverty or hunger through ramen or food donations to local food banks and free meal kitchens. The day has since been celebrated the second Friday of January to allow Mr. Ando due recognition.

Personally, I think Momofuku Ando Day should be on the 19th. Why? Well, it’s easier to remember and just seems more respectful to be honest. Any way you slice it, his invention changed the world we live in and he definitely should get recognition!

Here’s my annual Momofuku Ando Day video! This year, I demonstrate the recipe my mom used to make me when I was a kid and ultimately the reason I started reviewing instant noodles.

Momofuku Ando Day! #964: Nissin Raoh Backfat Rich Soy Sauce Flavor

SPECIAL: Momofuku Ando’s 105th Birthday Google Doodles and more explained here

2015 The Ramen Rater’s Momofuku Ando Day here!

Today marks the second annual The Ramen Rater’s Momofuku Ando Day! Who was Momofuku Ando? Well, if it weren’t for him, myself, tens of thousands of college students and millions and millions of people around the world would be hungry today. Momofuku Ando invented not only the instant noodle in 1958, but also the Cup Noodle which was introduced in 1971. The company he founded, Nissin Foods, still exists today and produces flavors of instant noodles for many countries in the world. Here in the US, Top Ramen and Cup Noodles are prevalent while in Japan more local flavors like Shoyu (soy sauce) or Shio (salt) can be found. In the Philippines, there are flavors like Bulalo and Sotanghon, and in India Curry and Masala are available. Here’s a short piece about Mr. Ando and the invention of instant noodles from Nissin’s website. I should also mention there will be a special Show Your Noodles to see today as well!

The folks at Nissin Foods USa sent me a big box of samples a couple weeks ago and inside was this little gem from Japan. I have seen this before online but never anywhere in the USA. This is called Raoh and it is one of Nissin’s more premium Japanese products. In honor of Momofuku Ando day, I have done up a video review that you can see below.

Here’s the special Momofuku Ando Day celebratory video! Check it out then look below for more!

Here are the details from the side panels (click image to enlarge).

The veggie packet.

Looks like some nice stuff – green onion I recognize but not sure about the other things.

Dry powder packet.

Looks like soup base powder.

Liquid soup pack.

Has a nice scent.

Check this out – a slice of pork! This is awesome – definitely something you won’t find here in the US.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sweet onion, green onions and hard boiled egg. The noodles were very nice – perfect chewiness and consistency. Reminds me of fresh ramen noodle varieties. The broth is strong and has a nice thickness. The broth is definitely rich. Has a deep soy flavor and nicely thicker than normal instant noodle broths. The slice of pork? It re-hydrates exceptionally well with a nice consistency and some fat – very decadent for an instant bowl of ramen I’d say. The veggies did well too – a decent amount. All in all, this is amazing stuff. I’d love to try all of the varieties of Raoh, that’s for sure. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars easy. Thanks to Scott A. over at Nissin Foods USA for sending this along with the other samples – awesome! UPC bar code 4902105214077

A tour around the Cup Noodles Museum in Yokohama, Japan. I would love to go here someday. Here’s the official website and hours/price:

Name: CUPNOODLES MUSEUM (formal name: Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum)  Address: 2-3-4 Shinko, Naka-ku, Yokohama 231-0001 Japan  Telephone: General information: 045-345-0918 / Chicken Ramen Factory reservations: 045-345-0825 (Reception hours: 10:00-18:00, holidays excluded)  Museum hours: 10:00-18:00 (last admission 17:00)  Holidays: Tuesdays (when Tuesday is a holiday, closed the following day), year end / new year holidays  Admission: Adults: 500 yen (tax included) / high school age children and younger admitted free  *Some facilities within the museum require separate admission. *Museum admission fee and facility usage fees are subject to change.

Last year’s Momofuku Ando Day video – Top Ramen Chicken Flavor!

My Mom’s Custom Breakfast Ramen From When I Was A Kid


I have very fond memories of what my mom used to make for me to eat during my childhood. She used to make me Totino’s Party Pizzas for breakfast, (I had one a couple days ago and noticed that either they’ve gotten a lot smaller or I’ve gotten a whole lot bigger). She used to make the wonder of wonders, turkey spread as well, which consisted of mayonnaise, sweet pickles, leftover Thanksgiving and a Cusinart – I would have that and some more mayo on crackers and it was divine. One thing that I must say really stood out was a breakfast dish she would make for me. She called it ‘Spaetzle,’ but it was a little different than this:

Spätzle[ˈʃpɛtslə] ( listen) (Swabian diminutive of Spatz, thus literally “little sparrow”, also Spätzli or Chnöpfli in Switzerland or Knöpfle or Hungariannokedli or galuska) are a type of egg noodle of soft texture found in the cuisine of Germany and of Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Alsace and South Tyrol.

While I’m sure spaetzle is quite good, this is something that transcend multiple cultures. Let me explain…

The noodles my mom originally used were Nissin’s Roasted Ramen. This was available for a short period in the 80’s and then ceased to exist. What we found out was that Nissin Roasted Ramen is the exact same thing as Nissin Chikin Ramen, the instant that came out in 1958 and was the first instant noodle to be sold commercially. For quite a while, we were able to get the Chikin Ramen at Uwajimaya in Seattle’s International District. Uwajimaya is a big Japanese supermarket which my parents would take me to often. I remember going there and to the family’s favorite Chinese restaurant Sun Ya when we were down there. I remember we went to see Chinese New Year festivities down there one year and saw a demonstration during the Tienamen Square protests in 1989.

Things have changed since then. I don’t usually have turkey spread or the Party Pizzas anymore. Nissin Chikin Ramen is not at all readily available. I do have instant noodles often and thought today ‘it’s been years – I oughtta make some Spaetzle…’ So I did. Here’s the recipe, probably a little different from the way my mom made it but comes out almost identical.

The Ramen Rater’s Mom’s Spaetzle

  • 1 pack Top Ramen
  • 3 eggs
  • Cooking spray
  • Salt and pepper
  1. First thing you need is to start cooking the noodles – cook them as directed on the package. Use the seasoning packet too. If you want your noodles to be more flavorful, use less water. To get them ‘al dente,’ I would cook them about one and a half minutes in the boiling water, stirring and separating with a fork.
  2. Drain the noodles. See, if you use less water and the flavoring is more concentrated, the more flavor gets into the noodles, got it?
  3. Take a frying pan and spray it good with the cooking spray. Get it up to a good heat and drop in your noodles. Stir ’em and mess with them quite a bit – they have a tendency to stick unless you do. Mess with them in this was for a couple minutes or so.
  4. Crack three eggs over the noodles and then stir, stir, stir. It’s a kind of bizarre and nasty, sloppy mess for a bit here but don’t give up! Stir everything around a lot for a couple minutes.
  5. Finally, make sure everything in the pan is flat and covering the bottom of the pan. Cover the pan and turn the heat off. Let it sit there for a couple few minutes.
  6. It’s done! The bottom should be crisp but not burnt. Fold it over like an omelet and salt and pepper to taste.

There’s a little bit of my childhood for you to try out. It’s a really basic recipe and very few ingredients, but hey – same amount as a PB&J, right? Kinda? I’m sure my mom wasn’t the only one who made eggs and Top Ramen like this. Also, I’m sure she used butter instead of cooking spray. Anyways, enjoy and thank my mom in the comments below if you like it.