Instant ramen rivalry
Mie goreng, or literally â€śfried noodlesâ€ť, is one of Indonesiaâ€™s most popular dishes. And Indomie Mi Goreng does not disappoint. For 59 cents, each pack comes with six components: a dried block of noodles, seasoning (bumbu), fried onions (bawang goreng), seasoning oil (minyak bumbu), chili sauce (sambal) and soy sauce (kecap). After I cooked the wheat flour noodles for three minutes, they were al dente and had an acceptable taste for being instant ramen. The unique flavor comes from the perfect balance between the sweet, salty and spicy seasonings. The fried onions rounded out the dish because of its nice crunch that added another layer of texture. With its cheap price, Indomie elevates the basic instant ramen and is definitely a staple for when you want a tasty meal.
Packaged in a neon orange and white cardboard cover, the original Cup Noodles with Chicken Flavor is the Japanese instant ramen weâ€™ve all had. In the iconic â€śCup Noodlesâ€ť styrofoam cup contains the dehydrated wheat flour noodles, corn and carrots along with the chicken flavor powder. After pouring boiling water into the cup and letting it stand for three minutes, the concentrated umami scent from the chicken soup overpowered my senses. The broth was golden and savory but was too salty that I could only drink a few sips. The noodles were springy and curly and a reasonable portion for the price of 34 cents. The small amount of vegetable bits remained somewhat hard and did not contribute any additional flavor to the dish. Overall, I did not find the ramen special, but it is a convenient and an easy meal to make.
Although Sapporo Ichiban offers a generous portion size, the Japanese ramen fails to meet high expectations due to its simplicity. The package contains a block of noodles and a packet of soup base which made the price of 75 cents expensive for only two ingredients. I was disappointed that an extra packet of toppings like vegetables was not included. However, the noodles were a generous portion and I enjoyed the chewy texture that most wheat noodles donâ€™t have. I added all the soup base powder into the recommended 500 milliliters of water for the soup and it was too salty. The soup had a light chicken flavor combined with a mild soy sauce flavor, but it tasted like a standard instant ramen soup. The lack of ingredients and overall taste made Sapporo Ichiban Original lackluster.
Shin Ramyun is a Korean ramen and if its bright red packaging does not brand it as spicy, the word in different languages such as Vietnamese, Spanish and German certainly will. The package comes with a circular block of noodles, spicy soup base and vegetable mix. I cooked the noodles for four minutes because they were thicker and difficult to cook evenly. Because of the large portion of noodles, I found them to be soggy before I could finish eating. Since I enjoy spicy foods, the soup was the most impressive aspect of the ramen. The aroma and taste of the beef broth combined very well with the spice. However, if you do not love spice, I do not recommend adding the entire packet of soup base. For $1.25, Shin Ramyun is an excellent alternative to your typical ramen and is a must have for spicy food lovers.
By Alison Ho,Â Media editor-in-chief
Photos by Mia Nam