Saturday, August 6, 2011

Instant Noodles: around the world

It is said that noodles were invented in China, and then instant noodles were invented in Japan. I think it's one of the most awesome inventions. Different noodle types and flavors are developed in many different Asian countries. As a person growing in Indonesia, I love Indonesian instant noodle flavors very much.

Last Thursday I tagged along with my fellow co-workers to an Indian groceries, and he recommended trying Masala Spicy noodles.

And what's interesting about this instant noodle is the fact that I must not drain the cooking water.

The issue I always have with cooking instant noodle is removing the dust from the noodle during processing. I would normally boil the noodle for about 10 seconds, drain the half-cooked noodle, and then add water again into the noodles and cook it again. I love drinking the soup (even though I know it's good mostly because of chicken stock, salt and MSG) so I like the cooking water clean.

Aside from starch from the noodle, the cooking water will also contain slight amount of oil if the noodle is deep fried during processing (which is mostly the case for cheap instant noodle because air dried noodles are expensive). This fact once led to people believing that instant noodle manufacturers spray wax on the noodles to make it look delicious. I don't see the point of adding more cost into the noodles while not giving any benefits whatsoever; I don't think waxing the noodles make them look better. The wax rumor was likely just another hoax found on the internet, just like the other day I found in my cousin's chain mail saying that if you drink carbonated drinks you can die of suffocation because it contains carbon dioxide. It's dumb.

The texture of the noodle isn't very different from Indonesian noodles except that it's slightly thinner and this Indian instant noodle has more noodles in the package. Interestingly, it's more chewy than Maggi noodles manufactured in Singapore/ Malaysia. I never like Maggi noodles when I was in Singapore because they're too soft for me.

Even though it says "Spicy" it's not spicy at all. It's not even half the strength of Shin Ramyun, a brand of spicy Korean instant noodle. It's one of the brands I love, but I hate the fact that each package of Shin Ramyun contains 2 servings, so my stomach always ended up getting too full.

Moving on, I tried this Japanese instant udon bowl.

Japanese products, as usual, have very fancy packaging.

The dried condiments are packed very nicely in a clear, transparent bag with flowery design. It has nicely cut vegetables and fishcake. I think I've had Japanese instant noodles with such fancy condiments, but most of the time they include dried spring onions inside.

Instant udon is generally a little bit more chewy than instant ramen. I like noodles that are slightly chewy and thick so I generally like instant udon better than instant ramen. Most of Japanese instant noodle flavors are usually soy sauce or miso based, and I don't have too much problems with that except for the fact that they taste a little bland to me. 


  1. Indomie seleraku aja deh :P I prefer mi goreng (esp yg rasa rendang), tapi gw juga suka ama ramyun! and i agree klo ramyun porsinya terlalu banyak!


  2. Iyah shin ramyun kalo pake telor (biasanya gw masak mi selalu pake telor) pasti buntutnya jadi super kekenyangan hahaha


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