Tag Archives: taiwanese food

Samples From A-Sha Dry Noodle

Got a package the other day – samples from A-Sha Dry Noodle! Curious as to what’s inside…

On the left is a new snack noodle from A-Sha. This is actually a large sized bag with little bags inside. On the right we have something new. You know how tea comes in little bags that are steeped, right? Well, these are called Mini Break, and they use that same teabag concept to make a cup of coffee. Thanks to the guys over at A-Sha! I’ll be reviewing the noodles soon and might have to brew a cup of coffee to go along with them!

#1280: Deshome Sun Dried Noodle Chlorella Powder Noodle With Curry Sauce

A new one from Deshome! Not only is it new, but it’s curry! However, it’sd also chlorella. I put one variety on instant noodles on my bottom ten list that was a green tea and chlorella combo. I’m not sure if it was the green tea or the chlorella I dislikes, but I really disliked that one! So I guess we’ll see! As far as chlorella, Wikipedia has this to say:

Chlorella is a genus of single-cellgreen algae, belonging to the phylum Chlorophyta. It is spherical in shape, about 2 to 10 μm in diameter, and is without flagella. Chlorella contains the green photosynthetic pigments chlorophyll-a and -b in its chloroplast. Through photosynthesis, it multiplies rapidly, requiring only carbon dioxide, water, sunlight, and a small amount of minerals to reproduce.[1]

The name Chlorella is taken from the Greekchloros, meaning green, and the Latin diminutive suffix ella, meaning small. German biochemist and cell physiologist Otto Heinrich Warburg, awarded with the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1931 for his research on cell respiration, also studied photosynthesis in Chlorella. In 1961, Melvin Calvin of the University of California received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his research on the pathways of carbon dioxide assimilation in plants using Chlorella.

Many people believe Chlorella could serve as a potential source of food and energy because its photosynthetic efficiency can, in theory, reach 8%,[2] comparable with other highly efficient crops such as sugar cane.

It is an attractive potential food source because it is high in protein and other essential nutrients; when dried, it is about 45% protein, 20% fat, 20% carbohydrate, 5% fibre, and 10% minerals and vitamins. Mass-production methods are now being used to cultivate it in large artificial circular ponds. It is also abundant in calories, fat, and vitamins.[3]

When first harvested, Chlorella was suggested as an inexpensive protein supplement to the human diet. Advocates sometimes focus on other supposed health benefits of the algae, such as claims of weight control, cancer prevention, and immune system support.[3] According to the American Cancer Society, “available scientific studies do not support its effectiveness for preventing or treating cancer or any other disease in humans”.[4]

Under certain growing conditions, Chlorella yields oils that are high in polyunsaturated fatsChlorella minutissima has yielded EPA at 39.9% of total lipids.[5]

One small (35 participant) study suggested Chlorella supplementation has a positive effect on the reduction of dioxin levels in breast milk and it may also have beneficial effects on nursing infants by increasing the IgA levels in breast milk.[6]

So there we are. Let’s give this a try!

The back of the package (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, boil 400ml water. Put noodles in bowl and add water, cover for 3-4 minutes. Drain. Stir in curry sauce and it’s done.

Here’s one of the two noodle ‘fans.’

The curry sauce sachet.

This smells quite excellent.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added fish ball with crab eggs, fish ball with shrimp eggs and green onion. The noodles are very green! They had an odd scent when steeping that was like tea. They have an absolutely wonderful chewiness and gauge. These are top notch folks – then we come to the curry sauce. It’s enough to coat everything nicely and has a wonderfully rich curry taste. There were lots of bits of mushroom and onion throughout and it had a very nice homemade feel. I am thoroughly impressed with this – quite possibly the best Taiwanese variety to date. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 4716873922252.

Here’s a news story (starts at 2m45s) on my Top Ten Taiwanese Instant Noodles list I came out with in 2013. Deshome was second place!

#1268: Wu-Mu Dried Noodle With Jah Jan Sauce

Now for something completely different. Jah jan noodles! What’s jah jan? It’s a black bean (or soybean) sauce rich with flavor – popular in China, Taiwan and South Korea. This one’s from Taiwan. Let’s check it out!

The distributor’s sticker (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself.

The back of the package (click image to enlarge). To prepare, boil noodles for 4 minutes, then add dehydrated vegetables for 30 seconds. Drain water and stir contents of sauce sachet until combined.

The noodle block.

The vegetable sachet.

A little array.

The sauce sachet.

Soybean paste and oil.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sauteed beef with Jane’s Krazy Mixed Up Pepper, sweet onion and green onion. The noodles are hearty and of good character and chew. The flavoring is interesting; spicy and a bit of oiliness to it. It has this strange flavor though that I can only liken to something from when I was a kid. See, I was that kid who oft times was found chewing on his pencil eraser. Well, I’m getting a bit of that kind of flavor here; not sure why. Anyways, eraser or not, everything works pretty well together and it good. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 4710175565162.

A Wu-Mu advertisement in Mandarin.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1097: Amianda Noodle Homely Dried Noodles – Sesame Paste

Today, we have the last of the Amianda noodles. I’d like to thank Amianda for doing the interview and sending the great samples! Sesame paste – let’s get to it.

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

The noodle block.

Sauce packet.

Has a soy scent.

The sesame paste packet.

Has a peanut and sesame scent.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added a little Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles are nice – elastic and a little chewy. The flavor is that of sesame paste with a nice peanut butter after taste. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars.

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/zhETS4fdU0w” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>Here’s how to make your own sesame paste!

Meet The Manufacturer: #1096: Amianda Noodle Tachia Noodles – Hot & Spicy Sauce

As we wind down this spotlight on Amianda, we arrive at a hot and spicy variety of their Tachia noodles. Let’s have a look.

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

The noodle block.

The sauce packet.

Has a soy scent.

The second liquid packet – presumably the spicy one.

Oh yeah – this stuff is spicy!

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added a fried egg with a little Louisiana Hot Sauce and some beef, garlic and Vidalia sweet onion sauteed with soy sauce. The noodles are great – nice elasticity, chew and texture. The flavor is salty, spicy and soy. A pretty good flavor and texture. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars.

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/bpWp9i-sow8″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>Here’s some footage of part of a night market in Taipei.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1095: Amianda Noodle Tachia Noodles – Fried Shallot

Today it’s fried shallot. Shallots are really quite enjoyable; like an onion and a garlic had a child – strong flavor! Let’s give this one a try!

The back of the packaging (click image to enlarge).

The noodle block.

The sauce packet.

Has a soy sauce scent.

The fried shallot packet.

Wow – pungent shallot!

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added roast beef and Vidalia sweet onion sauteed in a little Worcestershire sauce. The noodles were really good – texture and chew were great. The flavoring wasn’t as I expected though; the shallot taste was there, but almost seemed burnt. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars.

Scallion Pancakes in Taiwan – man that soiunds really good!

Meet The Manufacturer: #1094: Amianda Noodle Thin Noodles – Sesame Oil

Thin noodles! Let’s have a look.

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

They’re not kidding – these are really thin and wispy.

The sauce packet.

Has a soy scent.

The sesame oil packet.

Has a sesame oil scent.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sauteed beef, Vidalia sweet onion, red bell pepper and minced garlic with a little Worcestershire sauce. The noodles are great – fluffy and soft with a comfort food texture. The flavor is really mystical; it’s got the sesame oil there, but then there’s this flavor hovering around – like cinnamon or pumpkin spice – not sure what it is but it’s really great! 4.25 out of 5.0 stars.

In Taiwan, they have these ‘Night Markets’ – tons of different sellers of absolutely everything from merchandise to food. This is the Fong Jia Night market.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1093: Amianda Noodle Hakka Flat Noodles – Satay Sauce

I don’t know what made me do it, but I felt a need to consult Wikipedia on satay and Taiwan. So I did and found this:

Shacha sauce (Chinese: 沙茶; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: sa-te; also spelled sa cha sauce), or paste is a Chinesecondiment primarily used in Fujian, Teochew, and Taiwanese cuisines. It is made from soybeanoil, garlic, shallots, chilis, brill fish, and dried shrimp.[1] It has a savory and slightly spicy taste.

The ingredient has multiple uses:

  • as a base for soups
  • as a rub for barbecued meats
  • as a seasoning for stir fry dishes
  • as a component for dipping sauces, for example as used in hot pot meals

Shacha sauce is also known as sa-te sauce in the Hokkien dialect, reflecting its origin back to the satay sauce introduced by expatriate Chinese returning from South East Asia. It is however quite different from the peanut-based satay sauce popular in Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore.

Was glad I did – I thought that this might be more of a chicken or beef kind of flavor, but I would’ve been completely wrong. So, satay or shacha, here it is!

The back of the package (click image to enlarge). May contain seafood.

The noodle block. Note that these are hakka noodles – wide!

The sauce packet.

The sauce has a soy sauce scent.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added Vidalia sweet onions. The noodles are broad and have such a nice texture – so like an egg noodle but not eggy! The flavor is light; and has a seafood taste that’s very enjoyable. Reminds me of shrimp shumai. 4.5 out of 5.0 stars.

A fish market in Taiwan.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1092: Amianda Noodle Tachia Dried Noodles – Rou Zhao Meat Sauce

Today, we have the Tachia noodles again but with rouzao. What is rouzao? Wikipedia mentioned that it involves minced pork (Amianda mentioned this one includes it in the sauce) and minced pork rice is the common rouzao:

While Minced pork rice is referred to as one important icon in typical Taiwanese folk cuisine, the variety of methods to customize flavors is so wide that it creates considerable differences between regions. In southern Taiwan, where people name it by the sauce “bah-sò-pn̄g (肉燥飯)” instead of the meat, Minced pork rice is preferably served with pork with less fat. People in the north of Taiwan favor a greasier version of meat sauce with rice.

In southern Taiwan, while “bah-sò-pn̄g” is seen on the menu indicating Minced pork rice, “ló͘-bah-pn̄g (滷肉飯)” remains on the very same menu, referring to another dish where braised pork belly covers the rice. The same rice with braised pork belly is known as “khòng-bah-pn̄g (焢肉飯)” in northern Taiwan.

Minced pork rice can also be found in China, and a wider selection of vegetables such as corn is eaten along with it.

Sounds good – let’s check it out.

Back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains pork.

The noodle block.

This time there’s no info on the sauce packet.

A little thicker than the past few. Has a really nice sweet pork scent.

Andy joined me for a bowl of noodles.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added a fried egg and ham I minced, garlic, sesame oil and a little soy sauce and sauteed for a few minutes. The noodles are spectacular – elastic and perfect chewiness. The flavoring is awesome! Has a sweet and salty braised pork flavor that is just out of this world. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.

Video on how to make Rou Zao Mian – kind of what we have here. Mian means noodles.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1091: Amianda Noodle Homely Dried Noodles – Original Flavor

Today I’ll be reviewing a thinner gauge noodle by Amianda. I thought it was funny that they were called ‘homely,’ as here in the US homely usually means ugly, but I think this time it’s meant to be more along the lines of homemade or home-style.

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

The noodle block. A very thin gauge.

The liquid sauce packet.

In the provided literature, it says ‘the most classic flavor of all, sauce with hand-made soy sauce can serve you the original sweetness of noodle.’

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added a fried egg and some ham. The noodles are very thin and have a nice elasticity and texture. The flavoring while light has a very nice soy flavor and sweetness. These are excellent! 4.0 out of 5.0 stars.

The differences in soy sauces around Asia are discussed, centering in Taiwanese soy sauce.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1090: Amianda Noodle Dried Noodles – Spicy Sauerkraut

Today it’s a spicy sauerkraut – kind of interesting to see sauerkraut as a popular addition in Taiwanese noodles, but this isn’t the first time I’ve seen it – I think it’s about the fourth. Anyways, let’s give it a look!

The back of the packaging (click image to enlarge).

The noodle block. They look about the same as the Tachia variety I reviewed for #1088.

A sauce packet.

Has a nice sesame oil scent.

Another liquid packet – the spicy component perhaps?

Yep – has some heat!

The sauerkraut pouch.

A decent amount and has a nice scent.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added green onions. The noodles are excellent – nice texture and chew. The flavoring is a little oily and bland. There’s a bit of spiciness there. The sauerkraut’s kind of interesting – a nice crunch to it but not a strong flavor. Left wanting a little more flavor. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars.

About making sauerkraut.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1089: Amianda Noodle Hakka Flat Noodles – Fried Bean Sauce

Today it’s hakka noodles, a variety I have only very recently found out about. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about the Hakka people in Taiwan:

In Taiwan, Hakka people comprise about 15 to 20% of the population and are descended largely from Guangdong immigrants: they form the second-largest ethnic group on the island.

Taiwan’s Hakka population concentrates in Hsinchu City and Hsinchu County, Miaoli County, and around Chungli in Taoyuan County, and Meinong District in Kaohsiung City, and in Pingtung County, with smaller presences in Hualian and Taitung County. In recent decades[when?] many Hakka have moved to the largest metropolitan areas, including Taipei, Taichung, and Kaohsiung.

Many people in Taiwan are of mixed Hoklo, Hakka, and Taiwanese aborigines heritage. Approximately half of the population of Hakka in Taiwan also speaks Taiwanese Hokkien, and it is highly likely[original research?] that many Taiwanese-speaking households descend from Hakka families in Taiwan who lost their language a few generations back.

The Taiwanese variant of the Hakka language resembles other variants of Hakka spoken in other parts of the world, but differs vastly in terms of pronunciation due to the influence of Taiwanese Hokkien.[citation needed] Therefore it is difficult, though not impossible, for speakers of other Hakka variants to understand Taiwanese Hakka.[citation needed]

So these people are known for their simple cuisine and thus, the Hakka  noodle. With that, let’s check this one out!

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

The noodles are wide a a little thick.

The fried bean sauce packet.

Has an interested scent – beans are what come to mind.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added chopped ham, Vidalia sweet onion and minced garlic to a little soy sauce and sauteed and a fried egg. The noodles have a very nice chew and perfect texture. The flavoring is nice with a little heartiness. 4.25 out of 5.0 stars.

Hakka Performance by Vancouver Taiwanese Hakka Association