Someone on social media alerted me to the existence of a new spicy variety on the market. This is The Knight Of Fire Ribs. I’ve reviewed The Knight Of Ribs (in fact, that was on the 2018 Top Ten Instant Noodles OF All Time list). This is a spicy version and we shall see exactly how spicy it is. Let’s give it a try!
Palkin The Knight Of Fire Ribs – South Korea
Detail of the packaging (click to enlarge). Contains pork. To prepare, boil noodles in 550ml water for 4 minutes. Drain, saving 5 spoons water (5 * 15ml = 75ml). Add in sachet and reserved water and return to boil on low heat for 10 seconds. Finally, stir and enjoy!
The noodle block.
A large retort pouch. See it in use on the Instant Noodle Recipe Time episode below.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion. Noodles are thick with a nice chew to them. The sauce from the retort pouch contains pork and potato and a lot of flavor. It doesn’t smell spicy to me, but once I took a bute it seemed like a bit of a dirty trick! This stuff is spicy – I think maybe habanero spicy going on. A very respectable heat, however I think the regular knight is much, much better; I just found myself wanting that flavor instead of the spicy infused one. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8809402741410.
Here we have what you call a ramen snack or noodle snack. These are popular throughout Asia but little known in the United States. In a way. It was often I heard about people taking a domestic pillow pack of instant noodles here in the states and pulverizing it while still in the package and then the seasoning dumped on and held closed, then shaken to distribute the flavor. This was commonly considered a somewhat of a lazy teenager’s way of cooking one of the easiest products to cook around. Well, they’ve been creating products that are prepared in this way for a very long time in Asia. Spicy, sweet, salty – you name it. Here’s Samyang’s Sriracha Ramen flavored one for you to see today!
Samyang Foods Sriracha Ramen Snack – South Korea
Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Unsure whether it contains meat – check for yourself. To prepare, crush noodles through unopened package into bite sized pieces. Open package, remove seasoning sachet and add to crushed noodles. Hold opening closed and shake vigorously. Finally, enjoy as a snack!
An uncrushed noodle block.
The seasoning base.
A very light powder.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added honey butter almonds, Craisins, cashews, peanuts, and sesame sticks. The noodles are light and have a nice crunch to them that doesn’t break your teeth. The seasoning brings a salty and spicy hit with a little tinge of sourness which works well. For a snack, I give this one 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073310902.
I think we found this one up in Canada but honestly don’t remmebr. It sounds good – I mean udon is alright but bulgogi – now you’re talking. Here’s a little about bulgogi from Wikipedia –
Bulgogi (/bʊlˈɡoʊɡiː/buul-GOH-ghee; from Korean bul-gogi [pul.ɡo.ɡi]), literally “fire meat”, is a gui (Korean-style grilled or roasted dish) made of thin, marinated slices of beef or pork grilled on a barbecue or on a stove-top griddle. It is also often stir-fried in a pan in home cooking. Sirloin, rib eye or brisket are frequently used cuts of beef for the dish. The dish originated from the north area of the Korean Peninsula and is very popular in South Korea. In fact, bulgogi is widespread in South Korea, such as at fancy restaurants and at local supermarkets selling pan-ready kits.
This appears to be a South Korean product packaged for sale outside South Korea. Alright let’s give this a go!
Wang Bulgogi Flavor Udon Korean Style Noodle – South Korea
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, briefly warm noodles is hot water and drain. Add noodles and liquid base to the bowl and add water to fill li ne. Microwave (1000W) for 3 minutes. Add in flake and sesame oil. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added green onion, Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, and beef. Udon came out nicely – standard pouch gauge and chew. The broth was very sweet and actually quite good. Bits of veg and fishcake floated around nicely. Pleasantly surprised. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 087703289987.
I’ll be first to say that I enjoy almonds, usually the smokehouse ones. You know the ones I’m talking about. I’m pretty partial to chocolate ones too although I don’t usually have them. I’ve had ones with crunchy candy coating too. I also tasted almond milk the other day – tasty but just seemed so weird – but I liked it.
These on the other hand are a chicken of a different color as it were. Let’s take a look and see how they are.
Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkeummyun Hot Chicken Flavor Almonds – South Korea
Here’s the back of one of the individual packages (click to enlarge). They come in a display box also. No meat here. To prepare, open package, insert pair of grabby fingers. Grasp one or more almonds. Insert into primary face hole. Finally, masticate andf enjoy!
A single almond.
Finished (click to enlarge). The almonds are smooth and shiny from the thin crunchy coating. They are indeed hot – very hot. I really expected a heat level more along the lines of the Zzaldduck snack but these are rip-roaring feisty spicy. The almonds are of good quality and the flavor is undoubtedly Buldak Bokkeummyun original. For a snack, I give these 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073910157.
I’ve been kind of on a weird crusade lately. It has come to my attention that the popular Mala variety of Buldak Bokkeummyun is being touted by many people across the Interwebs as 4x Spicy. This is totally untrue – it’s really more like 0.5x. I did an informative video presentation about it – check it out here!
Mala was originally made for Chinese markets, but it’s definitely flexed it’s muscles and entered the outside world since everyone wants to try the newest, latest greatest. This one has Sichuan pepper in the mix – it’s got a kind of numbing heat to it which is definitely much different than what Westerners are used to, that’s for sure. Today I’ll do a review and also going to do a spicy noodle challenge with this one. Let’s get started.
Samyang Foods Mala Buldak Bokkeummyun Bowl – South Korea
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line and cover for 4 minutes. Drain using poke holes on lid. Add in spicy liquid sachet. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added Chinese sausage, spring onion, and Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts. The noodles are standard gauge ramyun. The flavor is indeed spicy (nowhere near 4x) but respectably spicy – it would make my wife die. Has a bit of the regular BB taste and Sichuan pepper and other tastes going on. Included vegetables were good. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073211391.
Although the name jajangmyeon is cognate with the Chinese dish zhájiàngmiàn (炸酱面), Korean jajangmyeon differs in many ways. Yong Chen, an associate history professor at the University of California, Irvine, argued that although the dish “began as the Northern Chinese noodle-and-ground pork dish zhájiàngmiàn, it is thoroughly Korean.”
Do I detect a little national pride in the end there? Let’s pop this open and give it a try!
Samyang Foods Jjajang Buldak Bokkeummyun – South Korea
Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add noodle block and solid ingredients sachet to 600-ml boiling water and cook for 4 minutes. Drain, saving 120ml water. add noodle, sachet contents and water to pan and return to a boil. Stir-fry for 30 seconds. Finally, stir and enjoy!
The noodle block.
The liquid base sachet.
Thick and brown.
The solid ingredients sachet.
Peas and other bits in there.
Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles come out very well – thick and chewy. They have a great ramyun gauge and good mouthfeel. The flavor is jjajang for sure – thick black bean sauce augmented with that trademark Buldak Bokkeummyun sweet spiciness as well. Vegetables hydrated perfectly and went well with it. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073113909.
Here we are again with the Fire Noodle Challenge. This is the Samyang Foods Mala Buldak Bokkeummyun. So, all over YouTube, people are wincing and screaming as they choke down packs of Mala – why? Well, for some reason, they are under the impression that it’s 4x spicy. Don’t get me wrong – it’s quite spicy – it’ll kick your butt. But it is a far cry from the 2x Spicy Nuclear Fire Noodle, that’s for sure.
Here’s my full dissertation of what’s going on here. It’s funny – all of this and even talking to the company and I got this comment on YouTube today – ‘t’s not a same thing man.. they have the mala flavor with 4x spiciness written on the packages. But not every mala flavor has 4x spiciness. I think you are trying the regular one’ – yeah… So all I could find as far as a pack saying 4x was a picture of a pack with a 2 changed to a 4 in Photoshop – and you could even see the 2 underneath still… Amateurs. Anyways, here’s an article touting my claim as well. In the video above you can see that there’s a snippet of a communication with Samyang Foods as well. So yeah sorry YouTube – there’s no 4x spicy fire noodle. Quite honestly, I hope there will be sometime – I hope it’s in a green package too! I mean, they’ve done almost every other color. Maybe a 4x spicy green onion flavor? Guess we’ll just have to wait and see!
Chacharoni is a play on words. Jjajang kind of sounds like ‘cha cha’ and the roni calls to noodles. There are other plays on words in the South Korean industry when it comes to jjajangmyeon. So basically what you have here is a thick noodle with a black bean sauce – also known as jjajang. Here’s a little about jjajangmyeon from Wikipedia –
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line and let steep for 4 minutes. Drain. Finally, add in liquid base sachet and stir well – enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles hydrated nicely in the 4 minutes directed. They have a good ramyun gauge and chew. The sauce coats everything well and has a good black bean flavor. Included vegetable and bits of TVP did well too. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073210783.
Here’s a new one from Samyang Foods – Pagaejang. It is similar to Yukgaejang. I looked up Yukgaejang and found this on Wikipedia –
Yukgaejang (육개장) or spicy beef soup is a spicy, soup-like Korean dish made from shredded beef with scallions and other ingredients, which are simmered together for a long time. It is a variety of gomguk, or thick soup, which was formerly served in Korean royal court cuisine. It is believe to be healthful and is popular due to its hot and spicy nature.
The dish may alternatively be made with chicken rather than beef, in which case it is called dak yukgaejang or Dakgyejang.
I looked up Pagaejang and found it to be a spicy beef and spring onion soup, which sounds pretty similar. Let’s delve into this and see what’s inside!
Samyang Foods Pagaejang – South Korea
Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Unsure whether this contains meat. To prepare, add powder sachet to 500ml boiling water and then noodle block. Cook for 4 minutes 30 seconds. Turn off heat. Add in contents of large liquid sachet and vegetable sachet contents.Finally, stir and enjoy!
The noodle block.
The dry seasoning base.
A very interesting mixture here.
The liquid base sachet.
A thick liquid.
The vegetables sachet.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, spring onion and beef. The noodles came out really nice – great gauge and chew. This is the way I like ramyun; it almost has a thin gel on the noodles which I like a lot. The broth is just about as perfect and I can imagine. It has that nice beef flavor and a decent spiciness. It seems like I would go to a fancy restaurant and order it off the menu. Just amazing. The included vegetables hydrated to a T. This is a new favorite – hope it’s around forever. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars! EAN bar code 8801073116442.
For awhile now, I’ve been trying to get my hands on some of this that actually is from South Korea. Thanks to Anders and his girlfriend Ji-Min, here we are! Here’s some info from Wikipedia –
Shin Ramyun/Ramyeon is a brand of instant noodle (including cup ramyeon) that is made by South Korean food company Nongshim since October, 1986. It now exports to over 100 countries, and is the highest selling instant noodle brand in South Korea.
Shin Ramyun is well popular for its spicy flavor. It is produced in two kinds: Shin Ramyun, the original one, and Shin Ramyun Black, which was introduced in 2011. A standard package consists of noodles, a sachet of flavoring powder (soup base), and a sachet of vegetable flakes. Shin Ramyun Black contains extra beef stock soup.
Shin Ramyun was introduced in October 1986 by Nongshim. The Nongshim R&D team came up with the idea of Sogogijanguk, a Cabbage and Beef Stew, which is one of the most popular traditional South Korean dishes.
In 2015 it has risen to 28 billion units sold since its first introduction. Shin Ramyun is listed on the National Brand Consumption Index (NBCI) as the number 1 brand in South Korea (2012~2016) for its brand awareness and brand power.
The name of Shin Ramyun is from a Chinese character Shin (辛), which means “spicy.” Shin Ramyun uses red and black packaging with the emphasized calligraphic word “辛”. The meaning of the Chinese character is shown on the background of the package. Nongshim decided to emphasize the Chinese character Shin (辛) for their brand with a belief that a single Chinese character delivers the brand image better than written in Korean. Additionally, the character is the surname of both the founder of Nongshim and his elder brother, who started Lotte.
As you can see, its definitely what you can call a success story. It’s probably one of the most popular instants around. Let’s check out this South Korean version!
Nongshim Shin Ramyun – South Korea
Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Unsure whether it contains meat or not. To prepare, add noodles block and sachet contents to 550ml boiling water and cook for 4 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!
The noodle block.
The soup base sachet.
The spicy soup base.
The vegetables sachet.
A nice mix of vegetables.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added beef, spring onion and Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts. The noodles come out really nice – a very standard ramyun – thicker and with a good chew. The broth has a spicy and beefy kind of taste, however I’m getting a lot of mushroom and a burnt kind of bitterness as well. It’s been a long time since I’ve had Shin Ramyun and honestly, I’m not too enthused. Now everyone hates me. 3.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801043014809.
Okay, okay. After being bombarded with people disagreeing with the odrer of the ranking on my The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Spiciest Instant Noodles list, I thought I’d give this one another go-round.
The little octopus on the pack seems to be beckoning me to try again – I’ve seen him alkmost every trip to a Korean grocery, although it’s pretty hard for me to do re-reviews. Why? Well, I’ve already tried it. I’ve got so many that I need to try here… But lately that number has been dwindling so just seemed like a good time and especially a good time since I’m preparing for the 2017 edition of the spicy list.
I think I’ll do a mukbang video for this one. That’s when you scarf it down really fast in front of all to see. Kind of weird but why not – that’ll be at the bottom. Okay – let’s check out this Bulnak variety!
Paldo Bulnak Bokkeummyun Pan Stirfried Noodle – South Korea
Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Contains octopus. To prepare, add noodles and vegetables sachet to 500ml boiling water and cook for 3 minutes, 30 seconds. Drain. Add in liquid base sachet and cook for 30 seconds. Finally, stir and enjoy!
The noodle block.
The liquid base sachet.
Thick with a spicy scent.
The vegetables sachet.
Lots of green onion.
Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles hydrate just right. An excellent gauge and chew as well. The liquid base coats everything thoroughly – no skimping here. The flavor is an extremely fiery one. It’s a little sweet and then has a nice seafood kind of taste as well. The included garnish works just right. Definitely not for the innocent bystander spicy fan – only for the hardcore. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 648436101030.
Wait a second – this looks familiar. So there are two versions of the Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkummyun cheese flavor bowls. Indeed there are two versions of the packs as well. Here’s the orange version I reviewed – #2291. What’s the difference? I’m going to guess that they came out with the black one first and people mistook it for the regular version and were annoyed. Kind of makes sense since the black one definitely looks like the standard Buldak Bokkummyun bowl. Well, except for the chicken with the cheese. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about the original variety:
Buldak Bokkeum Myun (Korean: 불닭볶음면) is a brand of ramyeon produced by Samyang Food in South Korea since 2012. In 2015, the brand attained monthly sales of 6 to 7 billion won. Buldak Bokkeum Myun is known for being one of the spiciest ramyeon in Korea.
I recently created The Definitive Guide To Buldak Bokkeummyun and reviewed the whole line of the Buldak Bokkeummyun products and interviewed Samyang Foods too. This black background version indeed was changed up for a more ‘cheese colored’ version. Anyways, let’s crack this one open.
Samyang Foods Buldak Bokkummyun Cheese Flavor (Black Bowl) – South Korea
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line and let sit covered for 4 minutes. Poke holes in the lid (through the little triangles). Use them to drain off excess water – leave just a little in there. Add in sachet contents. Finally, stir and enjoy!
This looks slightly different from review #2191. I don’t see the flecks of seaweed and sesame seeds in that one.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, cucumber and baked chicken. So the noodles came out great. Indeed, they have a thick gauge and decent backbone. The flavor is spicy hot in the extreme. This is one of the hottest instant noodles out there, however about half as spicy as the original. It is not a non-spicy though so don’t think you’re getting off the hook with just a cheese taste – it’s still extremely spicy. Finally, the cheese powder just doesn’t cut into the heat very much and is kind of undetectable for this reviewer. I think a liquid cheese sachet to drizzle on top would bump it up a notch. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 8801073210967.