Tag Archives: hottest instant noodles

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

So in late August 2017, a fellow named Jay from Taiwan told me about a very spicy noodle I should try. I had recently put out the new Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time for 2017 and was definitely keen on trying anything and everything spicy of course to begin the search for newcomers for the 2018 list.

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

18 Prohibited: The Initial Burn

On September 1st, I gave it a go. My experience with anything spicy in the instant noodle realm hailing from Japan was always one of disappointment. Well, I shouldn’t say disappointment – the dishes usually were very tasty, but the heat level just wasn’t very strong at all. What’s more, the package called for 700ml of water to cook the noodles in – one of the highest amount I’ve ever seen for a single serving of noodles. So, thinking it would be a nice one for clearing my sinuses while I had the flu, I delved into it.

As you can see, it was spicy. Real spicy. I figured ‘hey, maybe this is because I have the flu – maybe I can try it again and it won’t hit me as hard.’ The only problem was that I didn’t have access to another one of these packs easily. a guy named Jonathan from Chicago stepped up to the plate – he had a couple extra and shot one my way.

It sat behind my monitor for a few weeks, awaiting its day of glory. I wanted to do it at the right time in order to give it the full attention it deserved.

Training Day 1

I thought maybe I should ‘train’ for this. My plan was to try three fiery varieties in the three days leading up to Friday the 13th in October 2017. First I saw this one on sale in 99 Ranch Market – JML Spicy Hot Beef from China. It was on the inaugural Top Ten Spicy list and I thought that it would definitely be a good one since it had a lot of broth and really burned me up the first time I’d tried it. Well, I really had no problem with this one.

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

JML Artificial Spicy Hot Beef Flavour Instant Noodles (get it here)

Training Day 2

Next up on the 11th of October was the original Fire Noodle Challenge – the Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyun. Definitely a spicy sucker – it packs the heat. This one doesn’t have a broth with it (despite the myriad of videos I’ve seen of people preparing it incorrectly) and after scarfing it down in under two minutes, it still packed a serious heat that had the inside of my mouth throbbing.Definitely easier to handle than the first time I’d tried it, for sure.

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyun (get it here)

Training Day 3

Finally, the day before I decided to go with the one I’d put at the top of the 2017 Spiciest list – Samyang Foods’ 2x Spicy Haek Buldak Bokkeummyun. This one is known as the Nuclear Fire Noodle Challenge and it’s certainly not one that I’ve had an easy time with in the past. However, I thought that in addition to eating it fast (I did it in 1 minute, 41 seconds) I would try to do it without reacting to it – no ‘oooh’ or strained facial expressions. The only one I had was when I realized that I hadn’t had anything to drink before the attempt. You see, when I eat a lot of something dry, I almost always get the hiccups – this has happened in quite a few videos and I’ve learned to chug down something beforehand. Well, I forgot. Luckily, I didn’t get the hiccups and was kind of surprised I was able to handle it so easily this time around. In fact, the original fire noodle seemed stronger on the previous day – perhaps my theory of tolerance was working and my dream of conquering the 18 Prohibited would be a reality on the following day.

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

Samyang Foods 2x Spicy Buldak Bokkeummyun Nuclear Fire Noodle (get them here)

18 Prohibited: The Rematch

So Friday the 13th came. It was a pretty dark and dreary day with some sun breaks. My daughter Miriam was pretty happy – she had a full belly, had her Yo Gabba Gabba playing; the stage was set and I was ready to go. So I cooked up the 18 Prohibited and set forth to conquer the beast – conquer Shai-hulud (yep – Dune reference). Reading further will bring spoilers so watch the video first.

 

So I had the bowl of 18 Prohibited in front of me. The noodles were very hot but had sat under a fan for a little bit and so I was hoping they’d cooked down somewhat. Personally, I was kind of hoping their physical temperature would be about room temp because boiling hot edibles just aren’t my thing. My mom can drink practically boiling hot coffee but I didn’t receive that genetic gift.

I felt confident I could do this; I’d trained. I also have experience with spicy stuff for years. In fact, many of you don’t know, but after about 60 reviews between 2002 and 2003 or so, I switched to hot sauce. Saucerater was borne out of necessity. I was on the Atkins Diet back then and it was very restrictive of carbohydrates, something instant noodles are full of but spicy sauces are not.

So, it was time. I took my first bite. Definitely had the taste of fiery peppers – Jonathan informed me that he saw something mentioning the Bhut Jolokia or ‘Ghost Pepper’ and that 18 Prohibited was full of it. I’ve always found that habanero pepper has a kind of funky – almost chemical taste to them. This was no different. I got the initial kick of spiciness and kept going. Bite after bite, the heat climbed. I thought perhaps that if I just keep shoveling this awful stuff into my pie hole that it would level out and then I could chug down the broth and be done with it.

As the noodles became less and less, they seemed to be more broth covered; wetter. I never got so far as to actually slurp the soup. I was conquered. Beaten. I had failed. About three minutes in I threw in the towel (or napkin as it were) and declared it the spiciest instant noodle I’ve ever had. Samyang Foods’ 2x Spicy was just violently spicy stuff, but this took it to a completely new level. My mouth was on fire – and once again, my gut was wrenched in a kind of death struggle. It definitely was not happy. I ran to the kitchen to snag a little chunk of brownie we had and chugged a ton of liquid. Usually, I can hold my own and let the fire finally fizzle out, but this time I did have that urgent need to drink something.

The heat lasted for about 45 minutes and then my lips were just numb for about another 15 minutes. I sent my wife Kit a picture – she said they looked puffy and swollen. This was Friday the 13th and I made the attempt to eat a nightmare.

Rematch: The Story Of The 18 Prohibited Fire Noodle Challenge

18 Prohibited (Get them here)

In the hours afterward, my gut wrenched a bit a couple of times but eventually stopped. As a kind of parting gift from the whole experience, I noticed I had a slightly sore throat about 2 or so hours afterward. I’m writing this post at 6 am on the 14th and I’m sick. Sneezing, watery eyes, loads of snot. My son had a runny nose for the past couple of days so I guess the universe decided it was time for me to get a cold.

Despite being knocked down by a package of noodles from Japan, this was a really fun little journey. Honestly, I never expected something from Japan to be on the spicy list – definitely will be next year. I will again say as I did with the 2x Spicy that I don’t think there will ever be anything spicier than this one but I certainly ended up being wrong the last time I said that. I will say this – the 2x Spicy tastes leaps and bounds better than this one does. This one will get zero stars; it’s just foul and horrific. A perfect one to try leading up to Halloween.

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

NOTE – THERE IS A NEW TOP TEN SPICY LIST FOR 2018 – HERE IT IS

The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

It’s that time of year again! Actually, this is the first time the list is coming out in July although at the tail end of July. I usually have the lists come out on the Monday closest to the date it came out the prior year. So this list is a compilation of absolutely hottest and spiciest varieties I’ve had out of the 2,500+ varieties I’ve tried thus far. Something you think belongs on this spiciest of lists? Let me know – I’ll give it a try. Let’s get started!

Note – on the day of posting I remember that there was one variety that should be in this list. I’ve given it an ‘honorable mention’ at the bottom, so don’t forget to give that a look. It will most certainly appear in next year’s list in a position on the list as it is quite spicy and truly should get it’s little place in The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time. My apologies.

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

A video presentation of The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition.

#10: MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle – Malaysia

Spiciest #10: MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle – Malaysia - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles 2017 Edition

MyKuali’s new recipe added a big punch of heat to their already amazing and groundbreaking Penang White Curry Noodle. Thick almost saucelike broth fires up the palate and includes a generous amount of garlic this time. Original review

#9: Maggi Hot Heads Green Chilli Noodles – India

Spiciest #9: Maggi Hot Heads Green Chilli Noodles - India - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

One of the most recent ones I’ve tried. I was on the fence about including it to be honest, however it definitely does belong. A strong spiciness from a serious green chilli flavor. Definitely the hottest variety I’ve tried from India. Original review

#8: CarJEN Hot & Spicy Dry Curry With Chives Soup – Malaysia

Spiciest #8: CarJEN Hot & Spicy Dry Curry With Chives Soup - Malaysia The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

This is one not only spicy but unique. Not only does it have a brothless noodle, it has a sachet you mix with boiling water to make a soup that is served alongside. I’ve seen this done multiple times in Taiwanese variants but never from Malaysia – good show! Original review

#7: Mi E-Zee Perisa Kari Mi Segera – Malaysia

Spiciest #7: Mi E-Zee Perisa Kari Mi Segera – Malaysia - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

After mentioning I thought it could be improved by making it spicier, they did. They include a sachet of very hot chilli pepper flake – a pretty decently sized one that if you use, you will definitely be feeling the burn. Original review

#6: Samyang Foods Mala Buldak Bokkeummyun – South Korea

Spiciest #6: Samyang Foods Mala Buldak Bokkeummyun - South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The newest variety of the Buldak Bokkeummyun series, this one features Sichuan pepper. It provides a kind of buzzing, numbing effect which is different. Lots of good garnish such as well sized mushroom pieces in here. Original review

#5: Paldo Teumsae Ramyun – South Korea

Spiciest #5: Paldo Teumsae Ramyun – South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

On the list for four years now! Another South Korean ramyun with serious kick to it. This isn’t to be trifled with!  Teumsae has restaurants in South Korea which serve up some seriously spicy fare. I really like the text underneath the word Teumsae which reads, ‘Flavor. Culture. Human’ Original review here

#4: Paldo Bulnak Bokkummyun Spicy Fried Octopus Ramyun – South Korea

Spiciest #4: Paldo Bulnak Bokkummyun Spicy Fried Octopus Ramyun – South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

After many, many people complaining that I had the order hot and that this should be behind the #3, I decided to give it another try. You were right – totally concede that. However, this is definitely a fiery hot plate of noodles with a nice flavor. Original review

#3: Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyeon – South Korea

Spiciest #3: Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyeon – South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The bowl version of this is what is commonly used in the Fire Noodle Challenge. This stuff will really clean your clock – the initial taste is very sweet and savory and then bam. Indeed a crescendo of flame hits you palate like sucking on a charcoal briquet. Original review

#2: emart Dare You! Habanero Ramyun – South Korea

Spiciest #2: emart Dare You! Habanero Ramyun – South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The current packaging for this one has changed yet again. So now it features the name ‘Super Junior’ which is a reference to a Korean pop music act. Definitely need to try that – but at this point, this is definitely worth of the second spot. The broth is violently spicy – coats your tongue is heat and fire. Original review

#1: Samyang Foods 2x Spicy Hek Buldak Bokkeummyun – South Korea

Spiciest #1: Samyang Foods 2x Spicy Hek Buldak Bokkeummyun - South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition 2017 Edition

There is no doubt in my mind that there’s nothing hotter than this one out there – as far as they go, this is the spiciest of the spiciest – at least that I’ve tried. This is a real burner and definitely takes my breath away. Therefore, I would say that if you aren’t comfortable with spicy foods, this will grab you, throw you on the ground and have it’s way with you. Consider this a warning in big red capital letters!! The heat will linger long after the plate is clean – if you can get that far! Original review

Spiciest - The Ramen Rater's Definitive Guide To Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyun - South Korea - instant noodles

I would like to mention that I have made a special ‘Definitive Guide’ and video focusing on the Samyang Food Buldak Bokkeummyun series – you can see it here.

Honorable Mention – Paldo Volcano Curry Kkokkomyun – South Korea

Spiciest Honorable Mention - Paldo Volcano Curry Kkokkomyun - South Korea - The Ramen Rater's Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

As soon as I got everything ready to post this morning, I realized one that I’d reviewed wasn’t in the list – this one. It definitely belong in this list and so since redoing this whole list would take hours of work, I decided to give it the Honorable Mention position. It will most definitely be in next year’s list, If it were on the list this year, it would be in 9th place. Indeed it is a very hot curry that will blow your mind and should appear in the top ten. My apologies. Original review