A friend pointed me to a NPR story on New York City chef and restaurateur David Chang and his new ramen cookbook called Momofuku. The book has non ramen recipes also and from the excerpt seems to be for the serious cook. Here’s one excerpt discussing David Chang’s ramen broth recipe:
Momofuku contains a recipe for his ramen broth that’s miles away from the salty foil-wrapped flavor packets that come with instant noodles. In fact, Chang’s broth recipe requires pounds of meat and takes hours to prepare. But, Chang says, the layers of flavor that result make the prep time pay off, especially if you think of the dish the way you would a hearty soup.
Momofuku by David Chang and Peter Meehan is available from Amazon.com, currently it’s on sale about 40% off. If you buy it, use the Amazon.com link in the right hand column.
Note – The link also has the full audio from the NPR story which may be longer than the text story.
Well, it looks like she did it. Addie Broyles in Austin managed to navigate another week on the poorly designed interstate system and eat ramen for 7 days, with her family’s support! (I’ve never been able to get my wife to buy in to this kind of thing). As long as you ignore the opening sentence and the finger-wagging about nutrition this is a great article, including some of the recipes.
Great story with a nice photo collage as well.
Ramen noodles aren’t exactly the pharaoh of the food pyramid, but at less than 20 cents a package, they are cheap and easy to make, which makes them a favorite among college students. Just the thought of opening the crinkly plastic package and dumping a block of noodles into boiling water might take you back in time.
But in a recession like this one, maybe it’s time to give ramen another chance.
With a few vegetables, an open mind and suggestions from ramen lovers on Twitter, could I turn that brightly colored package of ramen noodles into the base of a really good meal? To find out, I proposed a weeklong challenge to my husband: to make ramen interesting enough to eat for seven days in a row.
Addie Broyles in Austin, TX (capital of Texas and home to one of the most screwed up interstates I’ve ever seen) is the food writer for the Austin American-Statesmen and Austin360.com. She announced on Monday that she would be trying to eat ramen once a day for 7 days and try to “not get sick of it”. Personally, I think this should be easy. If you go to a decent grocery store you can find enough basic variety to keep you interested even if you only add a few veggies and some chicken.
She has several good ideas so far from readers, if you have one, add a comment to her story.
ClassesAndCareers.com is hosting a contest where you can share your story about what you had to do to get free food. The winner gets several hundred dollars and a case of ramen, which is nice. Unfortunately the contest says “no stealing”, so if you survived off of sugar packets from the cafeteria, I guess that doesn’t count. On the other hand, if you committed arson in order to get free food in jail, I guess you’re in.
I tried to grow spinach this summer, but the seeds never sprouted. I like to eat spinach in salads, but it also does well in stir-fry’s, even if it doesn’t give you super-strength. Note: As usual, this is vegetarian in that you’re not adding meat. Check your noodles before adding the seasoning, the seasoning may have meat in it.
Submitted By: Melanie T.
Submitted From: Tennessee, USA
- 1 packet of ramen, any flavor except the “creamy” flavors
- 2 large handfuls fresh spinach leaves
- 1 tbsp roasted sesame oil (with or without chilis)
- 1 Tbsp black sesame seeds
- 1 tsp minced fresh ginger
- 1 clove minced fresh garlic
Boil the noodles just until barely done. Pour off water, add cool water to stop the cooking, stir in the seasoning packet to lightly flavor the noodles. Set aside. In a wok or seasoned frying pan, heat the oil along with the ginger, sesame seeds and garlic just until it begins to be fragrant. Toss in the spinach leaves and stir-fry until they are wilted but still bright green. Add soy sauce, remove from heat. Drain noodles and place in bowl. Pour spinach and sauce over the noodles.
I’ve never seen Chinese black vinegar before, but I do love Chili oil.
Submitted By: Shaun Liboon
Submitted From: St. Paul, MN
- 1 pkg. Roast Pork Flavored Ramen
- 1 tbsp. Chili Oil
- 2 tbsp. Peanut or Sunflower Butter
- 1 tbsp. Hoisin Sauce
- 1 tsp. Sesame Oil
- 1/2 tsp. Chinese Black Vinegar
Most decent chinese restaurants offer delicious thick homemade chili oil as a complimentary condiment. Grab a bunch with your next take-out order to stash at home. Crush the noodles in their packaging. Mix the last six ingredients in the bottom of a big noodle bowl along with the Roast Pork seasoning packet. Dump the crushed noodles on top. Top with boiling water, only until you just cover the noodles. Give it all a quick stir. Cover the bowl and go check your email. Mix it all up again. The noodles shouldn’t be too soupy, but a creamy and spicy sauce.
UPDATE AGAIN: One of these awesome shirts (the first one listed below). You can buy it for $15 here, starting on Oct 3.
shirt.woot.com has a “shirt derby” where you can vote to pick the best designs which then will presumably be made into t-shirts. I don’t know all the details and can’t seem to find them, but there are at least three great Ramen themed shirts in the contest.
Shirt 1 – Almost Too Complicated – directions for cooking, in case you forget.
Shirt 2 – Midnight Noodles
Shirt 3 – The Essential College Shirt – featuring microwave directions!
UPDATE: One of the ramen shirts, Almost Too Complicated, is in the finals. Not sure if voting is over or not, I was going to post this earlier but their site was broken for a day.
This might be a good way to turn a regular ramen pack into a “picante” version. I suspect taco seasoning is mainly chili powder and cayenne pepper, with maybe some cumin. I also figure you could use a bullion cube here if you follow the re-hydration instructions.
Submitted By: Holly
Submitted From: Brandon, Florida
- 1 package chicken flavored ramen – I like to use the ones in the Styrofoam cups for convenience and veggies!
- Taco seasoning in a packet – you will NOT be using all of it
- 1-14 ounce can of chicken broth – you can use water, but I like the added flavor
I absolutely love Mexican soups. I, however, cannot afford to buy the fresh ingredients needed to make them, so I often miss the flavor and spiciness. One day, the product of a little experimentation came about, and I now have an almost daily lunch option that satisfies my taste buds. 1. Open a can of chicken broth, pour in saucepan with enough taco seasoning to taste (I like mine spicy and use about a tablespoon) and stir to dissolve. 2. Heat to boiling, stirring so spices distribute evenly throughout broth. 3. Either add noodles and seasoning packet to saucepan and cook until tender or add water to Styrofoam cup and let stand three minutes. Then eat up! I like to have a tortilla to tear off and grab some noodle with. It makes it a bit more filling and almost authentic.
Okay, I’ve had rice pudding before, so maybe this would work, maybe? I don’t like coconut, so I’m not going to try it.
Submitted By: Vanne
Submitted From: Wisconsin
- 1 pack ramen, finely crushed, no flavor packet
- 1-1/2 c water
- 1 t. soy protein powder (optional)
- 1 t. vanilla
- 1/4 c. brown (or white) sugar
- 1/4 c. coconut
Crush ramen. Hint: leave it in the bag while crushing. A rolling pin might help too. Combine ingredients and bring to a boil for approximately 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. For a smoother pudding, increase the cooking time (add water as needed). Or, put the pudding in a blender.
This is the reason that YouTube was created. “NoodleMan Steve” in a green pimp suit bathes in ramen noodles, with flavoring added. He uses Maruchan chicken ramen for his bath. Remember, “it is not polite to eat with your hands”.