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 –
‘This may be the first soy milk noodles in a ZenPop ramen pack. Plus this one’s name is fun to say. Sesame and soy milk make the soup a bit more mild than normal tan tan noodles. Moreover, a little bit of ginger gives a nice accent to the soup. Enjoy your (probably) first mild spicy wantan noodles!’
Will do! Let’s give it a go!
Maruchan Soy Milk Tan-Tan Wantan Men – Japan
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains pork and chicken. To prepare, add boiling water and dry sachet to bowl. Cover for 3 minutes. Add in liquid sachet. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, soft egg, chashu pork, spring onion and sesame seeds. Noodles were pretty good but standard gauge. The broth had a nice color and separation to it. A lot of sesame flavor and a hint of spiciness. Definitely soy milk in there. Wantan fell short though. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4901990361392.
My wife Kit. She kicks ass – she’s always up to try something new!
The table accompaniments. Surprised that there wasn’t any togarashi to sprinkle.
We’ve tried the izakaya (appetizers) at all the ramen restaurants we’ve been to. This is their ‘Jinya Bun” – ‘steamed bun stuffed with slow-braised pork chashu, cucumber, and baby mixed greens served with JINYA’s original bun sauce and kewpie mayonnaise’
Here are their ‘Mini Tacos.’ ‘slow-braised pork chashu and kimchee in a crispy wonton taco shell’
Decided to try takoyaki this time – ‘battered octopus over egg tartar topped with kewpie mayonnaise, okonomiyaki sauce, fresh cut green onion and smoked bonito flakes’
For the main course, Kit opted for a rice bowl – she said it was pretty good.
Here’s what I ordered (click to enlarge), their Chicken Wonton Ramen (wantanmen). Their menu had this to say – ‘chicken broth: wonton, spinach, green onion » served with thin noodles.‘ The noodles were indeed thin. They married to the broth just perfectly. The broth was extremely good – very rich and gave me that same feeling as having noodles that had a runny egg yolk on them – pure bliss. The wonton were extremely good as well with nice texture and innards. Chicken flavor throughout. I can’t explain how absolutely fantastic this was and can say easily at this point that this bowl eclipses all other bowls of ramen I’ve sampled in the area, putting them to shame. A no-brainer 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.
This greeted me at the bottom of the bowl and honestly I was sad to see it. It meant that my ramen was indeed gone and my short, tasty life at Jinya Ramen Bar had ended. Perhaps we shall return and try something else next time.
Here’s another neat one from Zenpop.JP. Thank you! So Zenpop has all sorts of monthly boxes including ramen boxes. Nine instant ramen in one box for a good price – check ’em out and use coupon code RAMENRATER at checkout for a discount! Here’s what they had to say about this one –
“Wonton dumplings in soup curry which is flavored with a dozen spices. The smaller bowl of soup is light-textured and should be a perfect snack when you’re feeling hungry-ish.”
Hungry-ish eh? Yeah – that sounds about right right now. Let’s check it out!
Maruchan Soup Curry Wonton – Japan
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains pork and chicken. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line along with sachet contents. Cover for 3 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion. The wonton was alright; it mostly hydrated, however was kind of salty and a little funky. The broth did have a curry taste but indeed it was thin and definitely saltier than I would prefer. 2.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4901990051033.
It’s time for another top ten list and this time it’s The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodle Bowls Of All Time 2018 Edition! The first list debuted in 2013 – I can’t believe this is the sixth list! As always – if you are a company who would like me to review your products, please contact me via the contact link – I want to talk to you! These are my favorite instant noodle bowl selections from my over 2800 reviews to date. Let’s get started!
The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodle Bowls Of All Time 2018 Edition
Here’s this year’s video presentation of The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodle Bowls Of All Time 2018 Edition.
The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodle Bowls Of All Time 2018 Edition
#10 – Paldo Bul Jjamppong – South Korea
This variety boasts a thick and chewy ramyun – a wider and flatter noodle that’s become popular in the last few years. Pairing that with a spicy soup with strong notes of grilled seafood taste – almost smoky – and vegetables/seafood and you’ve got an excellent bowl. Original review
#9 – Maruchan Bowl Taste Of Asia Tom Yum Ramen Noodle Soup – United States
To be honest, I’m about as surprised by this one as you might be! But make no mistake – this US domestic variety is truly amazing. The tom yum flavor is just superb along with a huge quantity of noodles. You’ll fill up and be extremely happy as you do so. Original review
#8 – Maruchan Gotsumori Shio Wonton Ramen – Japan
The second Maruchan variety on the list and this one comes from Japan. A light and tasty shio broth is paired with a large quantity of noodles in this bowl. The inclusion of wonton – which are very good I might add – rounds everything out and becomes a delicious feast. Original review
#7 – Seven & I (Nissin) Gold Sumire Ramen – Japan
The noodles are thick and chewy – very premium. The broth has a very rich miso flavor that had a little thickness and a nice oiliness. The vegetables and bits hydrated perfectly – nice bits of ground meat and menma float happily about and are of good quality. Original review
#6 – Uni-President Man Han Feast Braised Pork Flavor Instant Noodles Bowl – Taiwan
First, the noodles have a little bit thicker a gauge than most instant varieties. Indeed they are premium although a slight bit softer than one might expect. The broth is a sea of rich pork flavor – different than many. As a matter of fact, this really REALLY has a nice pork flavor; most pork varieties don’t have a great pork taste as the pork taste they do have get overshadowed by saltiness. The vegetables hydrated well and the pork was very good. Original review
#5 – Uni-President Man Han Feast Super Hot Pot Beef Flavor Instant Noodles – Taiwan
So the noodles are broad and flat with a light chew and an excellent quantity. The broth is a tour de force of beef taste. It has a good thickness/oiliness to it as well as a good flavor. Indeed as expected, there’s a decent punch of spiciness. Indeed, the chunks of beef are of good size and quality. Moreover, the liquid with the beef in the retort pouch add depth to the broth. Finally, little rings of chilli pepper are here and there, joining the party. Original review
TTL stands for Taiwan Tobacco & Liquor and indeed there’s a sachet of rice wine in here! Add to that a big retort pouch full of decent sized chunks of chicken, good noodles and garnish, This is definitely a bowl to seek out and try. Original review
#3 – Little Cook Braised Beef Noodles With Tendon & Meat – Taiwan
Okay so first off, this is a heavy bowl. There’s a huge retort pouch in here full of beef and beef tendon. The noodles are wide and have a great chew and the broth has a nice flavor. But the start of the show is that braised beef and tendon – it’s perfect and there’s just so much of it. Very impressive! Original review
#2 – Nissin Gyoretsu-no-Dekiru-Mise-no-Ramen (Shrimp Tantanmen) – Japan
Talk about amazing. Now, on most of these bowls, you’ll notice I’ve added my own garnishes. I don’t count them in my reviewing – everything is reviewed prior to any additions I make. This is one where I’ve added nothing and just look at it! This one had very good noodles to start off. The broth was a very thick prawn infused decadent flavor spectacle. Then there’s the little crunchy topping and the other garnish they provide and this is just amazing stuff. Wow. Floored. Original review
#1 – Little Cook Thailand Green Curry Instant Noodle – Taiwan
Wow – I’m so freaking impressed with this one. First, there are two bowls. Peel back the lid of the first bowl and add boiling water. After a short time, you poke holes in the lid and drain the liquid into the second. A sachet of soup base is added and you have a soup with lots of corn and herbs. Next, a huge sachet with chicken and vegetables boasts a great spicy green curry flavor which mixes with the noodle. A really amazing product which is unique and delicious. This is Little Cook Thailand Green Curry Instant Noodle’s second year in the number one spot in a row – congratulations! Original review
Here’s another neat one from Zenpop.JP. Thank you! So Zenpop has all sorts of monthly boxes including ramen boxes. Nine instant ramen in one box for a good price – check ’em out! Here’s what they had to say about this one – ‘The soup has a condensed umami of chicken, which matches perfectly with the onion-garlic flavored noodles. Additionally, delicious wontons are included to make your empty stomach happy. Like in many other ramen bowls, sesame works as a hidden hero which brings a balance to the dish.’
Sounds like a good bowl of noodles – let’s find out!
Maruchan Gotsumori Shio Wonton Ramen – Japan
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains chicken and pork. To prepare, add in dry sachet contents and boiling water to fill line. Cover for 3 minutes. Add in liquid base sachet. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion and Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts. The noodles were very plentiful and hydrated well. The broth was just out of sight – had a nice heartiness and a good chicken taste./ Top that off with the wontons which. to my chagrin, are plentiful. Just a nice and happy stick to your ribsy kind of taste fest here. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4901990338318.
Here’s another one sent by Zenpop. Zenpop is a subscription box service where you can get many varieties of Japanese products sent to your door monthly. Here’s what they had to say about this variety –
Wanton and smooth noodles in the chicken broth soup taste simple but wonderful. You know what wanton is? It’s a kind of Chinese dumpling which is small and usually eaten boiled in soup. This bowl in lighter and lower in calories than others so enjoy freely anytime!
Well, anytime is now! Here’s a little about shio from Wikipedia as well –
Shio (“salt”) ramen is a pale, clear, yellowish broth made with plenty of salt and any combination of chicken, vegetables, fish, and seaweed. Occasionally pork bones are also used, but they are not boiled as long as they are for tonkotsu ramen, so the soup remains light and clear. Chāshū is sometimes swapped for lean chicken meatballs, and pickled plums and kamaboko (a slice of processed fish roll sometimes served as a frilly white circle with a pink or red spiral called narutomaki) are popular toppings as well. Noodle texture and thickness varies among shio ramen, but they are usually straight rather than curly.
Ah, what the heck. Here’s something about wanton from Wikipedia as well –
Wontons are commonly boiled and served in soup or sometimes deep-fried. There are several common regional variations of shape.
The most versatile shape is a simple right triangle, made by folding the square wrapper in half by pulling together two diagonally opposite corners. Its flat profile allows it to be pan-fried like a guotie (pot sticker) in addition to being boiled or deep-fried.
A more globular wonton can be formed by folding all four corners together, resulting in a shape reminiscent of a stereotypical hobo‘s bindle made by tying all four corners of a cloth together.
A related kind of wonton is made by using the same kind of wrapper, but applying only a minute amount of filling (frequently meat) and quickly closing the wrapper-holding hand, sealing the wonton into an unevenly squashed shape. These are called xiao huntun (literally “little wonton”) and are invariably served in a soup, often with condiments such as pickles, ginger, sesame oil, and cilantro (coriander leaves).
Alright – let’s begin.
Myojo Chicken Shio Wanton Noodles – Japan
Detail of the side panels. Conatins shrimp, pork, and chicken. To prepare, add powder base and boiling water to fill line. Cover for 4 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles were nice and chewy – had a premium feel to them. The broth was definitely chicken for sure. Was quite comfortable. I really liked the wanton – filled with little meaty bits. Flecks of scrambled egg rounded out the bowl. Not bad. 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902881426428.
In Hong Kong and Guangzhou, wonton noodles are usually in steaming hot soup with shrimp wontons and with leafy vegetables. There are plenty of variations of this popular Cantonese dish, with different toppings and garnishes. For example, the soup and wontons in a separate bowl, the noodles being served relatively dry, with the toppings and garnishes, dressed with sauce, dipping the noodles in the soup to eat it.
There are four distinct features: First, the wontons are predominantly prawn, with small amounts of minced pork, or no pork at all. Second, aficionados will insist on fresh, smooth thin noodles which are al dente, free from the taste and odor which is characteristic in many egg noodles when cooked. Third, the bouillon is light brown (prepared from dried flounder) and is usually steaming hot. Lastly, garlic chives are used as a garnish. The first two give the dish a wet but crunchy or crispy mouthfeel. The last two give the dish a unique bouquet.
In order to ensure that the noodles are perfectly al dente and free from “noodley” taste, the cooking process and sequence must be meticulously adhered to. The wonton is cooked first, and then placed in the bowl. The noodles are blanched for only 10 seconds, after which they are rinsed under cold water and placed in the serving bowl. Piping hot bouillon is then scooped into the bowl, on top of the wonton noodles. The bouillon must be tasty, yet not so strong as to overpower the delicate taste of the wonton and the noodles which it is meant to accompany.
When served, the spoon must be placed at the bottom, with the wontons above the spoon and the noodles on top. Because if the noodles soak in the soup for too long then it will be over cooked, this is strictly adhered to by the best wonton noodle establishments.
Although the “wonton noodle” is synonymous with wonton and noodles in piping hot bouillon, the dish may also be “dry”, as in lo mein (撈麵), where the wonton are on a large bed of noodles.
Let’s give this wonton noodle variety from Hong Kong a look.
Kamfen Noodle King Artificial Wonton Soup Flavoured – Hong Kong
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line as well as all the sachets. Let steep covered for 3-4 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added fish ball and spring onion. So the noodles are very chewy with a very unique crumble. Indeed, they are very hearty and good. The broth has a very nice taste and body – good oiliness and a perfect compliment for the noodle. Finally, the vegetables included were mostly corn and seaweed which hydrated to perfection. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 6920363400696.
Been a while since I’ve had a Kamfen bowl… Scallop and lobster wonton favor? Definitely Hong Kong. It’s a seriously rainy day today and we’re going to have a power outage I predict. Ahhh. It’s not like we live in the middle of nowhere; we’re in the city! Weird. Noodle time!
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains shellfish and crustacean. To prepare, add in contents of sachets and boiling water to fill line. Cover and let steep for 3-4 minutes. Stir and enjoy!
Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onions and fishballs. The noodles are very al dente and have quite a chew to them. They worked very well with the broth which has a nice seafood taste to it. Very impressed! 4.25 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 6920363401020.
Being low on instant noodles to review, I went to 99 Ranch to see if I could find anything I’d not reviewed yet. I ended up at the bottom end of the noodle aisle and found a ton of Kamfen stuff I haven’t gotten to yet. I always knew it was there, just didn’t get to the point of checking it out really. So being at that point, we’ll start trying these here and there. This one’s beef flavor wonton. Let’s give it a looksie.
Here’s the distributor/import sticker (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself.
Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). To prepare, add in all sachet contents and fill to line with boiling water. Let stand covered for 3-4 minutes. Stir and enjoy!
The noodle block. Mentions ‘electrical drying Fresh and clean.’
A powder base sachet.
A tan powder.
A sauce sachet.
More of a paste.
A vegetable sachet.
A nice mixture.
Finished (click to enlarge). Added Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, coriander and beef. The noodles are fascinating ;they have a different kind of chewiness that I very much enjoyed. The broth has a nice beef taste with a good oiliness. I hoped for a tad more flavor. The vegetables hydrated well and were of excellent quality – especially the corn which was nice and sweet. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 6920363401013.
Here’s another one that was sent to me by Javier over at Box From Japan – thanks! Box From Japan is a subscription service – you can get a box sent to you every month with some great noodles within! This is the last of the ones Javier sent me – it’s been a lot of fun reviewing these! Send more anytime! This one is wantan men – just think of wonton mein – wonton noodle! Let’s delve into this bowl!
Detail from the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free, but check for yourself. To prepare, add contents of sachet and boiling water to fill line. Let steep for 4 minutes. Stir and enjoy!
Poor Miles has a cold. He’s in pretty good spirits, though! Don’t worry kid – when you get a little older you can have some chicken soup!
Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles came out nice – very good chew and soft nature. The broth is just about the best chicken flavors broth I’ve had yet – strong and salty with a nice surface tension to it – if my 3 month old boy could, I’d let him try it to kick the cold he’s got! The best part was the little wantons floating around, which appear to have dehydrated chicken inside them – and they’re really good. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902881425544.
I’ve reviewed a few of these Hong Kong instant rice noodles in the past, but never looked up the meaning of Ho Fan. I did some research and found this on wikipedia:
While shahe fen and he fen are transliterations based on Mandarin, there are numerous other transliterations based on Cantonese, which include ho fen, hofen, ho-fen, ho fun, ho-fun, hofoen (a Dutch transliteration in Suriname), hor fun, hor fen, sar hor fun, etc. In addition, shahe fen is often synonymously called kway teow (粿條), literally “ricecake strips”, transliteration based on Min Nan Chinese, POJ: kóe-tiâu) or guotiao(pinyin: guǒtiáo; the corresponding transliteration of Mandarin), as in the name of a dish called char kway teow. However, shahe fen and kway teow are strictly and technically not the same (the latter being essentially ricecakes sliced into strips) and the Min Nans in general still consciously make a distinction between shahe fen and kway teow in their speech. Original ricecakes or its strips are very stiff in texture (even after cooking), making them unpopular with modern consumers.
Sounds like what we’re looking at here. Let’s check out this Sau Tao Ho Fan!
Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, add noodle block to 600ml boiling water and cook 2 minutes, stirring gently. Add in sachet contents and stir. Enjoy!
The noodle block.
The powder soup base.
Has a prawn scent.
The seasoned oil sachet.
Finished (click image to enlarge). Added fishball and coriander. The noodles are very wide and flat and made of rice. They are slippery but have a nice texture to them – good stuff. The broth was on the light bland side; could of used a little more something or a little less than the directed amount of water for my taste. 3.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 087303861521.
Next Friday is Halloween and we’ve got some plans with Andy this weekend! Thought he might like this one for breakfast today! He’s been curious about expanding his palate a little bit lately since our trip to Malaysia – something I really like. It took me a while to get to the age that I wanted to be more adventurous with food, and it’s great to see him starting to explore.
Here we are at a local farm and pumpkin patch. Fed all sorts of animals – was a lot of fun! Andy’s wearing the hat and shirt we found in Langkawi!
Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, add macaroni to 530ml boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Add is contents of sachet and stir. Enjoy!
Here’s the macaroni.
The soup base sachet.
Has a seafood scent.
Finished (click image to enlarge). Added prawns and Chinese long beans. The macaroni was pretty good – very thin walled. The broth wasn’t bad either, although it was so thin and there was so much of it. It had a light seafood taste which was good. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars. Andy really liked it! EAN bar code 4898828051115.
In the United States, something like this is more prevalent. Cheese and bacon do have their definite pluses! Get it on Amazon!