Instant Lunch: Ramen

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  • Topic: Egg dishes, Cooking, Ramen
  • Pages : 4 (1369 words )
  • Download(s) : 88
  • Published : December 4, 2012
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Ramen in the U.S. has come a long way. Once known only in its 10-for-a-dollar instant-lunch form, its become a staple of offices and dorm rooms all around the '80s,'90s, and today—high-end real ramen shops are springing up left and right on both coasts and everywhere in between. I grew up eating ramen twice a week, every week, as a kid. Now as a college student working my way through I still find myself keeping ramen in a special place in my gut. That said, my tastes have changed and expanded considerably over the years, and sometimes that little flavoring packet just isn't enough. As such, I've spent a lot of time devising ways to upgrade my ramen in cheap, easy ways. Ghetto gourmet, if you will. Today I am going to show you how to get your ghetto gourmet on.

The easiest way to quickly upgrade a bowl of instant noodles is with ingredients that require no extra cooking. I'm talking simple sauces and condiments like:
Miso paste
Chili bean sauce
Thai curry paste
Japanese curry powder
Fish sauce
Harrisa
Vinegar
Ponzu
I'm a condiment hoarder (I've got a whole double-layered shelf of my fridge plus the entire door and a full pantry cabinet devoted to them), so this is a particularly easy thing for me to do. The key is not to go overboard with too many different competing flavors. I often make this mistake after long nights out, assuming that when it comes to hangover cures, more is better. Not the case. Keep it simple. Bear in mind that if you're using a salty condiment, you should omit some of the seasoning packet.

You can also add:
Spices like white pepper, sichuan pepper, or chili flakes to the finished dish, or try adding a cinnamon stick, star anise, and coriander seeds to the simmering broth (remove 'em before serving!)

Fats like toasted sesame oil, chili oil, or an animal fat (pork, chicken, or duck are all awesome)
Citrus juices—a quick squeeze of lemon or lime right before serving can go a long way to brightening...
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