Tag Archives: irvine

#1463: Maruchan Instant Lunch California Vegetable Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

I want to send a special thank you to Craig Y. over at Maruchan for facilitating the process of getting Instant Lunch California Vegetable into my hands! Much appreciated! I hunted high and low for these and couldn’t find them! There are lots of products sold around the United States – and some do better in some areas than others. A good example would be the King Cake. Most people where I live don’t know what a King Cake is, however folks in Louisiana definitely do – it’s a special cake enjoyed around Mardi Gras. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about King Cakes:

A king cake (sometimes rendered as kingcake, kings’ cake, king’s cake, or three kings cake) is a type of cake associated in a number of countries with the festival of Epiphany at the end of the Christmas season; in other places, it is associated with the pre-Lenten celebrations of Mardi Gras/Carnival.

What started out as a dry French bread type dough with sugar on top and a bean inside 30 years ago, is now a sweet, sugary and iced Danish type dough that is braided with cinnamon inside and a plastic doll underneath. King Cakes are made of a cinnamon filled dough in the shape of a hollow circle. They have a glazed topping and are sprinkled with colored sugar. Hundreds of thousands of King Cakes are eaten in New Orleans during the Carnival season.

The cake often has a small plastic baby (said to represent Baby Jesus) inside (or sometimes placed underneath), and the person who gets the piece of cake with the trinket has various privileges and obligations.[1]

A company that makes cakes would probably not focus their King Cake varieties in the northwest as it would make more sense to sell them in Louisiana, right? Well, when companies like Maruchan decide where to sell which varieties, it goes much more deep than that, but it’s the same kind of thing. One might say ‘but hey – you were looking for it; they should sell it where you’re at!’ Although that’s a nice thought, I only eat one of each variety usually, so my single Instant Lunch purchase probably wouldn’t sway the distribution of a large company. But thanks, hypothetical person! Anyways, let’s have a look at this interesting instant noodle cup!

Here’s the back of the cardboard outer (click image to enlargContains chicken broth. To prepare, open lid halfway and add boiling water to fill line. Cover and let steep for 3 minutes and stir. Enjoy! One thing though – a LOT of people like to mention to me that they microwave these things. No! If you add water and microwave, you’re doing it wrong. If you want to include a microwave in you noodle-preparation doings, just take a cup and add water and heat that, then add it to the cup. This has been a public service announcement from The Ramen Rater – helping you correctly prepare your instant noodles since 2002.

Here’s detail from the lid (click image to enlarge). Notice what it says here – boil the water in a separate container! Also, don’t give it to little kids – you wouldn’t give a toddler a latte from Starbucks, would you? It’s hot stuff – use common sense!

The cup, exposed from the cardboard outer.

The noodle block. They’re pre-seasoned.

Here we have some of the loose California vegetable mixture that was loose in the cup. What is in the California vegetable mix you ask? Carrot, green peas, green beans, onion, celery, cabbage and garlic.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sweet onion, bell pepper and peas. The noodles are flat and narrow. They hydrated perfectly and didn’t have any inkling of sponginess. The broth is that of a vegetable flavor; kind of a melange that I think most familiar with prepared and processed foods would sum up as ‘garden vegetable.’ The supplied veggies hydrated extremely well – especially the peas, which often can go one way or the other – these were just right. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789001260.

You can find Maruchan Instant Lunch California Vegetable on Amazon!

Here’s a video showing how to do up a fusion recipe with Maruchan’s Roast Chicken Yakisoba.

#1444: Maruchan Instant Lunch Jalapeno Cheddar Flavor Ramen Noodles

Woo-hoo! I’ve been looking for a couple varieties by Maruchan for a while and this is one of them. I want to thank Craig Y. and all the nice folks at Maruchan for getting this one in my hands! I’m sure someone out there is going to say ‘Hard to find? It’s at every store around me!’ One thing though is that not every product is marketed or distributed to every area. One example of this kind of thing is a soda called Cheerwine. It’s quite popular and easily found in the southern United States, but it’s relatively unknown on the west coast. Anyways, Jalapeno Cheddar noodles sounds pretty neat! Let’s have a look at this one.

Here’s the detail from the cardboard outer (click image to enlarge). Contains chicken. To prepare, add boiling water to inside fill line. Cover and let sit for 3 minutes. Stir and enjoy!

The noodle cup, sans cardboard outer.

Detail of the lid (click image to enlarge).

The noodle block. All seasonings are infused into the block.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added bell peppers and beef sauteed in a little Worcestershire and some sliced green onion. The noodles are broad and flat – which lent well to the flavor I think. The noodles are just chewy and crumbly enough – definitely in the comfort food range of texture. The broth is of a creamy jalapeno cheese flavor. After 3 minutes of steeping, the broth is, well, brothy. After a stir and another minute to cool, the broth gained more of a sauce kind of thickening. The jalapeno flavor is there, however the heat is very, very mild. so if you like the flavor of jalapeno but not the heat, you’ll like this one. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 041789001673.

I think this is my favorite Maruchan commercial – it’s kind of fascinating to see the melding of such divergent cultures – Japanese ramen absorbed into Mexican culture. Besides, I think Mariachi bands are pretty awesome.

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodles Made In The USA Of All Time 2013 Edition

The instant noodle originated in 1958 in Japan, but since that time, they’ve expanded in popularity all over the world, including of course, the United States. Seeing this, instant noodle companies thought it wise to start building plants here in the 1970s. Since then, many brands operate factories here in the US, mostly in southern California. This is a list of my favorite varieties produced here, encompassing my over 1,100 reviews to date. With that, here’s your top ten, America!

#10: Nongshim Shin Bowl Noodle Soup

Shin Ramyun is one of the most popular instant noodles in South Korea. It’s spicy and beefy. This one here has that same great flavor and is microwaveable! A while back, they changed how they make their noodles for their line of bowls, and although they were great before, they’re even better now. Original review here

#9: Nissin Top Ramen Short Cuts Roast Chicken Flavor Ramen Noodle Soup

Nissin came out with this new line of noodles fairly recently. What’s unique about then is that they are a large box with a bag of seasoned noodles. You can use as little or as much as you like! The noodles are short and broad with a ‘comfort food’ appeal and a nice roast chicken flavor. Original review here

#8: Maruchan Bowl Hot & Spicy Shrimp Flavor Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

Maruchan has been known for a long time for their Instant Lunch line of noodles cups, but here we have something new for them – bowls! This one stood out for me – it had a ‘south of the border’ heat to it and was full of noodles of great quality. Spicy, but not so spicy most couldn’t handle it. Original review here

#7: Nissin Top Ramen Cucharealo Home-Style Picante Chicken Flavor

This is a serious fusion: the noodles are short and thin. I remember noodles kind of like these in other products when I was a kid, but always felt like I was getting way more soup than noodles. This one quells that need for more noodles – there’s plenty of them. The picante chicken flavor is excellent with notes of chili powder and cumin. Original review here

#6: Nissin Chow Mein Spicy Teriyaki Beef Flavor Chow Mein Noodles

I would have never thought that mixing teriyaki and spicy heat together would work, but it does. The combination is excellent – especially since the sauce coats everything so well. The vegetables hydrate nicely and it’s an all around great meal. Original review here

#5: Nongshim Chapagetti Roasted Chajang Noodle

Thick, slightly chewy noodles in a rich black bean sauce – excellent stuff. What’s also excellent is that you can make it in the microwave. It uses just a little water and the finished product has sucked it all up, leaving you with nice, saucy noodles. Original review here

#4: Maruchan Creamy Chicken Flavor Ramen Noodle Soup

I absolutely adore this stuff. Take your standard instant noodle and add a nice creamy chicken flavor. The broth has a really nice ‘stick to your ribs’ way about it. Whenever I’m under the weather, this is my go-to comfort noodle. Original review here

#3: Nongshim Shin Ramyun Black Premium Noodle Soup

After twenty years of Shin Ramyun, Nongshim decided to upgrade it. Enter Shin Ramyun Black. It has a richer broth, great noodles, and an amazing packet with nice veggies and beef – yes, beef. This one has little pieces of freeze dried beef that spring to life – and have an enjoyable chew and flavor! Original review here

#2: Sapporo Ichiban Japanese Style Noodles Chow Mein

This one requires a different approach to cooking, but it really pays off in the end. The noodles are cooked in very little water, which they slurp up rather quickly. Then you stir in the flavor packet and you’ve got some exceedingly wonderful chow. The flavor is reminiscent of yakisoba sauce; kind of a Worcestershire sauce thing going on. Then the fun part – a little packet of ‘green laver’ (powdered seaweed) is supplied for you to sprinkle on top. With it or without it, this one’s worth your time to try. Original review here

#1: Nongshim Jinjja Jinjja Flamin’ Hot & Nutty Noodle Soup

For regular followers of The Ramen Rater, this should be no surprise. I have been touting the greatness of this one back when it was only produced in South Korea. Happily, they make it in southern California now. Jinjja Jinjja (translates to Really Really) is a sumptuous sojourn to flavorland. Ramyun noodles are a little thicker and a little chewier than others. Combine that with a spicy and hearty pork broth, nice veggies and a packet with black sesame seeds and peanut powder. The result is absolutely perfect. Original review here

#947: Maruchan Yakisoba Jalapeno Cheddar Flavor

Merry Christmas Eve! Thought today I would go a little festive with my review. What does Jalapeno Cheddar instant yakisoba have to do with Christmas? Well, I don’t know but it just seemed like the right thing to do. You’ll see – trust me you’ll see. This is one I was looking for for a long time and my lovely wife Kit found it at the Grocery Outlet! Rad!

The bottom of the package (click image to enlarge).

Here’s what’s under the plastic wrap on top.

The noodle block.

The seasoning packet – rather large.

A lot of powdery cheese flavor! Has an interesting taste – I like it!

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added red bell pepper, onion, green beans, scrambled egg that was cooked in a tree shaped cookie cutter, Dua Belibis chili sauce and Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. Wow this is craziness. The noodles are nice – flat and broad with a nice consistency. The flavor’s great – like a spicy mac’n’cheese – and it’s decently spicy as well. Good stuff – I’m honestly surprised I haven’t seen it more than once, especially since its a product made domestically. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. Merry Christmas! UPC bar code 041789007675

Here’s a video about using Maruchan noodles to make mac’n’cheese

Maruchan has been posting a lot of these videos lately – nice to see people doing neat things with instant noodles!

#938: Maruchan Yakisoba Four Cheese Flavor

An absolute surprise yesterday! Found this and two other Maruchan Yakisoba varieties I’ve been hunting for for quite a long time! Let’s give it a try!

The bottom – click image to enlarge.

Here are the instructions on the lid (click image to enlarge).

The noodle block. Broad, flat noodles.

Here’s the big seasoning pouch.

A very light, fine powder.

Finished (click image to enlarge. Added sweet onion, sliced ham and Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles are broad and flat and quite nice! The sauce is good too – nice cheese flavor to it. I liked it a lot! 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789007682 – get it here.

Maruchan Yakisoba TV advertisement.

Here’s a community overview of where these noodles get made.

#935: Maruchan Instant Lunch Beef Flavor Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

Instantaneous Lunch? Nope – three minutes. But if you’re too impatient for that, I suppose one could eat it raw. I prefer the cooked version myself!

The information panel from the cardboard outer (click to enlarge).

The iconic cup itself.

So I wrote an article about how one shouldn’t blame the cup when spilling their noodles. Here’s the article and in the image above you can clearly see you’ve been warned – don’t microwave it and watch out for the ninos!

The lid on the cup (click image to enlarge). Notice it tells you to heat water in a seperate container in the microwave – don’t put the whole thing in there.

The noodle block. The seasoning is infused – note the powder on the noodles.

A scant few of the veggies – there were more in the bottom of the cup.

Finished (Click image to enlarge). Added fresh sweet onion, stir-fry veggies, thinly sliced ham, one egg, kizami shoga (pickled ginger), Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. Cooked the noodles as specified, sampled, fried everything in a pan. Added Dua Belibis Indonesian chili sauce at the end. The noodles aren’t bad – about what you would expect from a cup of noodles. I’ve had much better, but I’ve had many that don’t come close to this one’s quality. The beef flavoring is pretty good – tasty. The veggies hydrated well; most notably the corn was good. A nice cup of noodles! 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789001222 – get it here.

Hunting down a small child with some noodles – works every time!

S recipe involving Maruchan Yakisoba noodles

#930: Maruchan 35% Less Sodium Instant Lunch Beef Flavor Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

After this one, I think I have only four new ones to review! Egad! Hoping the mailman brings some new things to review soon! So here’s a cup of noodles for breakfast…

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

The iconic cup. I must say I dig on the font and the colors; very 70’s / early 80’s look and feel to it.

A scan of the lid (click image to enlarge).


The noodle block. If you notice, the noodles are bespeckled in a layer of powder – that being the seasoning. There are no packets here – everything is ready to go.

Here are some of the veggies I picked out of the cup.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Drained broth, added stir fry veggies, sweet onion, kizami shoga (pickled ginger), minced garlic, and an egg. Fried in a small skilled for a while and added a pinch of Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake and Dua Belibis chili sauce on top. Before this as usual I did the sampling. The noodles were good – nice texture and chew. The broth was lighter than usual, but had a nice beef flavor I enjoyed. The veggies hydrated well. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789001727 – get it here.

Absolutely awesome – why don’t any noodle companies give away stuff with their noodles in the USA? I call for an instant noodle rennaisance – marketing blitz and social hipness explosion!

Looks fancy and tasty.

#924: Maruchan 35% Less Sodium Chicken Flavor Ramen Noodle Soup

Strange how lately Walmart has become a treasure trove for Maruchan products – found six I hadn’t reviewed there recently! Anyways, here’s the chicken lower sodium pack.

The back of the package (click to enlarge). I really like how they have a little aside about the versatility of instant noodles here – not something you see all the time.

The noodle block.

Usually when I think of this color, I think of hot and spicy. Thought it interesting they should choose it for lower sodium.

Took a taste of the seasoning – quite nice. Has a slight sweetness at first then a good herbed chicken taste.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added stir fry veggies, baked chicken with Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning and some Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles are a little different; not in any sort of bad way though – they’re really good, just seem a little different as far as the outside. The broth is good – a very nice real chicken flavor, although seems like it needs a little salt. I would imagine 35% more salt. I think though if I weren’t used to eating salt in such abundance that it would be enjoyable if I were on a restrictive diet where salt was a concern. This is good stuff – seems like they’ve gotten the lower sodium pretty darn on the money. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789004117 – get it here.

This commercial is awesome – mariachi with noodles are cool!

A video about how to make sweet & sour with Maruchan Yakisoba noodles

#912: Maruchan Instant Lunch Shrimp Flavor Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

Here’s another one of Maruchan’s Instant Lunches – who would think that I wouldn’t have reviewed it until now… Weird! But here’s the shrimp instant cup!

Here are the ingredients and directions from the cardboard outer (click to enlarge).

The majestic iconic cup!

The lid.

The noodle block.

Here are the veggies and some shrimp!

Finished (click to enlarge). Added shrimp that were marinated in Crystal hot sauce, hard boiled egg with some Krazy Mixed Up Salt and a sprinkle of Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. Okay so the noodles: very light and thin. Buttery texture. The broth is nice – very calming and light with a nice shrimp taste I enjoyed. The bits and pieces of dehydrated shrimp and veggies were good too and re-hydrated nicely. I’m impressed with this one; really didn’t expect it to be this good! 3.75 out of 5.0 stars – a very good cup of noodles! UPC bar code 041789001253 – get it here.

Smiles For All!

Another Maruchan Japan commercial

#900: Maruchan Instant Lunch Chicken Flavor Ramen Noodles With Vegetables

When I recently redid The Big List, I noticed some things. One of them was that I have never reviewed this one, nor it’s Beef or Shrimp fellow Instant Lunches! Talk about an oversight on my part… I’m hoping that I’ll be able to do a Meet The Manufacturer with Maruchan soon – thanks to everyone who has asked me to do one, it’s just I’ve never been able to successfully get in touch with them. Well, here we go with a close up and personal with Maruchan’s Instant Lunch: Chicken Flavor.

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

Under the cardboard outer is the familiar foam cup.

Here’s the lid (click to enlarge). Read the lid! It says use a SEPARATE CONTAINER to heat the water and add to the cup – don’t microwave the cup!

The seasoning and vegetables are right there under the lid; no packets.

Finished. Added boiled chicken, green bell pepper, broccoli, yellow onion and Krazy Mixed Up Salt. When I stirred the noodles, veggies and liquid initially, there was a kind of frothy foam. The noodles are thin and have a kind of buttery flavor and light texture. The broth has a pleasant, salty chicken flavor and nice color – not bad. The veggies weren’t bad either – I think I liked the peas the most, the corn the least and the carrot in between. I could totally enjoy something like this for lunch. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 041789001215 – get it here