Ramen is the perfect food.

18 Feb

Ramen is food perfected; simple, cheap, tasty and reliable.

Ramen is the food of the people and for the people.

Ramen is the quintessential college kid meal and the Recession proof soup of the people. Ramen was also a childhood snack, I enjoyed it uncooked and crunchy.
As we speak I boil those staple squiggly noodles and the air fills with the unmistakable smell of al dente ramen noodles, a subtle, lovely aroma.

The majority of Americans are largely familiar with 3 incarnations of ramen; Top Ramen, Cup Noodles, and Maruchan Ramen. But as I a few blocks from the International District I can stroll to Uwajimaya, the Asia grocery, and walk an entire aisle of ramen noodles. The variety of ramen noodles available is staggering. I walk past the menagerie of cheap eatin and throw a dozen in my cart, each a different flavor with a different set of accoutrements.

Some ramen packages come with 5 or 6 packets of oil and powder. Some come with seeds and octopus ink, some with seaweed and shriveled onions. Some come with tofu that is freeze dried and expands like astronaut food.

But ramens most admirable feature is that it is dirt cheap, averaging at 50 cents a package. I have seen as low as 10 cents. This is a price that has no comparable rival. You can’t get a tootsie roll for 10 cents. If you are hungry and you scoop your couch for change, you will have enough for at least one ramen.

It is actually scientifically impossible to not be able to afford ramen.

Ramen alone is all well and good but it is also the foundation of infinite recipes. Add chicken, seafood, tofu and all manner of veggies. Crack an egg or two, and squirt a healthy dose of Siracha for my personal fav.

And of course ramen is an amazing resource for the traveler. It weighs nothing, is almost free and can be obtained nearly anywhere.

Time to eat, my ramen is done.


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4 Responses to “Ramen is the perfect food.”

  1. Hal Amen February 18, 2010 at 4:23 pm #

    Hal’s College Ramen Beef Stroganov Special:

    Get two packets of the cheapest ramen you can find, one flavor beef, one flavor mushroom. Cook the noodles and mix together in a big bowl, adding the seasoning packets. Drop in a couple healthy plops of sour cream. Stir until it slurps. Stuff yourself with fake beef msg and creamy goodness! Total cost: about 50 cents.

    (*Note: The older and wiser Hal prefers Korean kimchi ramyeon, a relative luxury at $1+ per packet.)

  2. geotraveler February 18, 2010 at 5:54 pm #

    Jungle style Cold Ramen noodles

    – When you’ve got no access to a stove, soak a packet of Ramen noodles in water for about 15-20 minutes or until the noodles have fluffed up and are a soft white.

    – Completely drain water

    – Stir in the seasoning packet

    Voila! Tasty goodness in the heart of the jungle.

  3. Mike Surber February 18, 2010 at 6:43 pm #

    Also happens to be stellar hangover food.

  4. Abbie February 20, 2010 at 12:30 am #

    I actually didn’t discover Ramen until college. Damn shame.

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