Monday, March 7, 2011

Nissin Bowl Noodles Rich & Savory Beef Flavor

Made By:  Nissin USA
Tools Required:  Microwave, Spoon
Meal Size (440 calories per package)
Rating:  :)

(available online through Amazon.com)

Today's noodle is another domestic product--what can I say, I haven't been to Uwajimaya in a while.  I'm trying out one of Nissin's "Bowl Noodles" products, which look to be a heartier offshoot of their Cup Noodles.  The package mentions that these are "Spoonable Noodles," so presumably that means we won't need chopsticks or a fork to eat these, just our spoon.  Something about the packaging makes me expect a western-style flavor, so we'll see what we have.

The bowl contains the noodles and one green foil packet which contains both the powdered soup base and all the dried veggies.  There is also a small white plastic packet of liquid "Soup Booster," but strangely it is packaged underneath the bowl inside the plastic outer wrap.  It seems like it would be easy to lose that, and I plan to check to make sure it is there when I buy this style in the future.  The noodles are not in a brick form, but are short pieces of loose pasta.  (Oh, maybe they were worried about the little packet getting buried in the noodles?)  They don't seem to be the same type of pasta as typical ramen at all, they look more like an egg noodle.  Anyway, we are to open the foil seasoning packet and add it to the bowl, fill to the line with water, and microwave for three minutes, then add the Soup Booster (which looked like vegetable oil with some meat grease floating in it) last.

The aroma is reminiscent of a typical Midwestern-style beef stew; the noodles softened up to about the consistency you might find in a Campbell's Chunky soup and the veggies turned out to be corn, cabbage, carrots, and green beans.  The noodles are definitely egg noodles rather than ramen, and the broth tastes much like it smells--it is a beef and onion stock, with maybe a hint of tomato sweetness along with the other vegetables. 

There is definitely nothing Asian about this product, so it's not really ramen at all; if you were expecting a heartier version of their beef Cup Noodles, I imagine it would be a disappointment, or at least a surprise.  If you go into it with the right expectations, though, it really is a pretty good bowl of beef & noodle soup.  I approve. :)

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