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doctoring ramen soup

Any ramen soup ideas - what do you add to it to make it your own? I add poached eggs, but I wondered if there are any new ideas out there.

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  1. eggs - poached or scrambled and then stirred in with the noodles
    veggies - gai lan or bok choy, boiled briefly in soup alone after ramen noodles are cooked and removed
    processed cheese - sounds disgusting and haven't tried but my friend likes to add it
    dumplings
    chopped ham
    frozen veggies (carrots/peas/corn)
    dried wakame

    1 Reply
    1. re: jinxed

      You can also crack the egg open into the pot of ramen to let it poach in the soup. If the soup is very hot, you can do this in the bowl.

      You may want to pull back on the amount of soup base you put into your ramen as well. It's mostly salt, so if you're adding other flavorings, especially if they contain salt, you know...

      Scallion ginger oil is always nice as well. Use any neutral-flavored oil and slowly heat one or two slices of ginger and some scallions in the oil for a while. The oil will take on the essence of the scallion. Keep it refrigerated as it will go rancid.

    2. Sriracha/tapatio, a raw or soft-boiled egg, and some leftover char siu if I'm lucky.

      1. A little fish sauce, shrimp, scallions, soy sauce, hard boiled eggs, chicken, sriracha, sesame oil, sesame seeds, onions.

        There is also a fun Ramen cookbook:

        http://www.amazon.com/101-Things-Do-R...
        7325801-9833521?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191599398&sr=8-1

        1. Fish balls, all types of leafy greens, tomato, scallions, omelet, dried mushrooms.

          1. eggs(slightly scrambled and stirred in raw), grated ginger, frozen peas, dried mushrooms(shitakenas black), hoisin sauce, thin sliced chinese sausage, leftover shredded chicken, green onions, grated carrots, mung bean sprouts,whatever is lying around(within limits)

            1. I sprinkle in some Cajun blackening seasoning.

              1. wow, ppl like eggs in their ramen. ive also seen salted eggs (with the solid yolk) being put into an authentic japanese ramen. i think perhaps the yolk as it dissolves with the soup gives it a thicker texture.

                me, i like green onions/scallions (lots of it, really), parsley/cilantro, blanched bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, chili sauce. mmmmm... ramen.

                1. Here's my favorite that I grew to love while stuck in Branson, MO...
                  I start with at least 2 cup2 extra of water, cuz there is a lot of steamin' going on...
                  ...and to the water, I add...
                  *a pinch of curry
                  *a pinch of chinese 5 spice
                  *a pinch of chili powder
                  *a few slices of fresh ginger to the water and finely chop a bit more and set it aside.
                  *clean 2 galric cloves. 1 goes into the boiling water and I finely chop the other and set aside,.
                  *a few coarse chops of purple cabbage, setting aside a small handfull.
                  *slice 2 green onions. One goes into the boiling water. (you guessed it) 1 sliced up onion is set aside.
                  *2 handfuls of a bag of Spinach get chopped up. A handful into the water. A handful set aside.
                  *1 big carrot I take a potato peeler to and make long "peels" just a few peels into the water. The rest set aside.
                  *a few slices of Daikon with the potato peeler. 1 peel into the boiling water 3 set aside.
                  *a handful of frozen peas goes into the boiling water.
                  NOW THIS IS WHER TIMING COUNTS
                  I've begun warming up a little skillet around the time I'm peeling carrots..
                  so now, I scramble 1 egg in the skillet with a pinch of the set aside green onions.
                  I take a look at the peas and they are getting almost done so I throw in the noodles.
                  By the time the noodles are done, so is the egg.
                  I set it aside.
                  In a nice big bowl, I put the remaining spinach, carrots, daikon, garlic and onions into the bottom of the bowl (keeping a pinch of oinions, carrots, ginger, cabage, and daikon for the top).
                  When the noodles are done, I remove from heat and add the MSG-bomb packet (lick the inside of the foil pouch-it's the law!) I pour all the yummy broth all out over the goodies in the bottom of the big bowl and garnish with all the veggie goodies and a couple of xtra shakes of spice...
                  ...put a big towel around my neck and start slurping away.
                  YUM!
                  Yes, I know there are things missing veggie wise, but while in MO, it was amazing even getting Daikon...the grocer had never heard of it and I had it special ordered...after 2 years of bugging the grocer guy, he finally started carrying soy milk, bean sprouts, and snow peas...soy milk was $4.99 in 1997, in Branson, MO.
                  Mmm, I still make this and now I add some shrimp or other goodie hanging around.

                  15 Replies
                  1. re: tatertotsrock

                    Wow, that's impressive. There's a lot of love goin on in that bowl of ramen.

                    1. re: foodiefromfl

                      Hi foodiefromfl,
                      Yup, it was my "self comfort" food.
                      I now make it when it's really cold...I will also make it for dinner when car camping in Joshua Tree, or on Santa Cruz Island during the colder seasons...and will make it if I feel a cold coming on-add extra fresh ginger, garlic, and onion, and a lot more chili powder.
                      If there is any kimchi hanging around, I'll have a side dish of it to go with the soup...good bye cold!

                      1. re: tatertotsrock

                        You inspired me. I went out this weekend and got some ramen, edamame, enoki and baby bella mushrooms. I have plenty of spices to experiment with. Thanks for sharing.

                        1. re: foodiefromfl

                          Hi foodiefromfl,
                          mushrooms...how could I have never added mushrooms?
                          I love mushrooms, and enokis are just the cutest litte things.
                          Call me clueless, but I have no idea what a baby bella mushroom is...could you describe them to me?
                          Now you've inspired me to hunt down some fun little mushrooms for my next ramen fun!

                          1. re: tatertotsrock

                            You should try to find some coral mushroom. Sometimes available at Korean markets. These mushrooms are fantastic.

                            1. re: hannaone

                              hannaone
                              Thank you!
                              They are beautiful!
                              When I was in Tasmania, I fell in love with all the crazy varieties of mushrooms...the colors were hysterical! Very alice in wonderland colors with dr seuse shapes.
                              We used to grill whole fish and just before they were done, we'd open the fish, put a ton of mushrooms inside and finish the last 5 minutes so the musroom's earthy goodness would season the fish perfectly..mmm!
                              I'm inspired to get to the Korean Galleria today to mushroom hunt for my ramen tonight!
                              Thanks!

                              1. re: hannaone

                                oh my god. my mom and i once bought mushrooms like these from an old woman by chiri mt. in korea. they were orange, though. so good! i've never seen them in the US. do you know their korean name?

                                1. re: augustiner

                                  I don't know the Korean name, I'll have to ask my wife later. We usually gather them ourselves from the wild near Brown lake in the Colville National Forest in Washington state.

                                  1. re: augustiner

                                    My wife says they are called Ssari Bossot (Sp?)
                                    Edit: In Korean: 싸리 버섯

                                2. re: tatertotsrock

                                  Baby Bellas are crimini mushrooms. They are sometimes sold under that name and labeled as "baby portabello mushrooms."

                                  1. re: Ditdah

                                    Ah Ha!
                                    Thanks Ditdah....Iguess I already love them since I always use criminis in my pasta...it's fun to learn new names for something I've been lovin' for a long time.

                                    1. re: tatertotsrock

                                      A "baby bella" is just a brown crimini mushroom. When they're left mature they develop into portabellas, hence the marketing term "baby bella."

                              2. re: tatertotsrock

                                Great post. Just wondering which ramen you use for this. I usually go with the Korean Shin Ramyun spicy ones (and yes, always lick the MSG packet!). An egg and a bit of scallion is as far as I usually go though!

                                1. re: Kagey

                                  Hi Kagey,
                                  Don't gag, but I crave ghetto-ramen...I just get whatever is the cheapest...shrimp flavor or oriental flavor.
                                  There are some that I'll get while in Little Tokyo, but I have no idea what they are since none of the writing is in English...sometimes I'll mix a couple of random packets if I'm making it for two...I just sniff and lick and decide if I'll add the packets or not.
                                  I'm so glad that I'm not the only one who licks the packet.
                                  When I'm not in the veggie-healthy mood, It's all about the egg/scallion combo!
                                  Yum!

                              3. A serviceable lunch for the two of us...

                                saute some sliced mushrooms until brown in some butter
                                add a quart of chicken broth, some red pepper flakes and a couple of grinds of black pepper and heat
                                add the noodles from two packages of ramen, one bunch of sliced scallions, and fresh baby spinach, cook a couple of minutes
                                Add some shredded leftover chicken or pork if any is around - there's usually shredded pork shoulder around somewhere - or some shrimp (I keep the frozen salad shrimp around to add protein to salad or soup)
                                add flavor packets

                                1. there are a lot of threads on this, but you have to have an egg....hard cooked and scrambled in the soup or the yolk laid neatly on top after the soup has been plated - mmmmmmmmm

                                  I also add the following:

                                  fish balls, lots and lots of fish balls
                                  kamaboko or any other fish cake product
                                  chinese greens like bok choy or maybe some pea shoots
                                  spam (sorry I'm half korean, I love spam)
                                  green onion - always green onion

                                  KIMCHI!!!! Especially when eating shin ramen

                                  1. Raw egg, Shrimp, squid, oysters, clams, crab chunks, green onion, onion, shredded carrot, gochujang, a touch of sesame oil.
                                    Put the veggies in the boiling water first, add the seafood, then the noodles and gochujang, toss in the egg just before the noodles are done (don't stir the egg), pour it into a bowl and add the touch of sesame oil.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: hannaone

                                      When eating Shin Ramen, I always add boiled quail eggs or thinly sliced pieces of side pork that has been boiled with scallions and peppercorns.

                                    2. I recently saw this on a Japanese cooking/food show to get a homemade version of a tonkotsu style ramen. I tried it at home, and have to admit, it's pretty good. First, get a container of Nissin donbei tempura soba (see this website for photo: http://www.jagajagamall.com/ProductDe... ). Break up the tempura pieces, and empty the pack into the bowl. Heat up some soy milk (plain, unsweetened), and pour into the bowl to cover the noodles. Close and wait 3 minutes, and add a little sesame oil and black pepper (or white pepper) before eating. You get that milky tonkotsu broth consistency, and soy flavoring, since it's really a soba noodle dish.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: E Eto

                                        That gagged me at first, but now that I think about it, it's growing on my by the second...

                                        1. re: E Eto

                                          How does this work?!? I'm definitely intrigued. So the regular soup base is tonkotsu flavored and the soy milk gives it the right consistency?

                                          What do the broken up tempura pieces add?

                                          1. re: eatfood

                                            The segment of the program I saw featured a chef from a famous Tokyo ramen shop and was asked how to improve upon instant ramen with basic ingredients that typical Japanese people would have in their homes. And that was his recipe. It's not really tonkotsu since there's no pork flavor, but it emulates the texture with the soy milk, and while it's really an instant soba, you get a heavy soy base with the flavor pack. The tempura pieces just gives it a little richness as well. Take from this what you will. Or just try it and see if it works for you.

                                            1. re: E Eto

                                              I'm assuming it's the plain unsweetened unadulterated soy milk as in the type one gets at the Chinese markets, as opposed to the commercial ones like,"Silk"?

                                        2. Cubed tofu, chopped scallions. Try sprouts too. Cilantro. The best addition to soups IMO are tofu knots (made from bean curd sheets). They can be purchased frozen in a variety of shapes and sizes and are truly a delicious addition to *any* soup (especially ramen since it's primarily water). Purchase the smallest size knots available because they double in size when cooked. It's also important to remember to use these sparingly because they tend to be *very* filling.

                                          1. shrimp or scallops, miso glazed eggplant, shiitakes, scallions

                                            1. I just like a little bit of lemon pepper in my chicken flavored ramen. Simple and tasty.

                                              1. I actually like my ramen dry sometimes, especially spicy korean noodles (i.e. Nong shim, kimchi flavour). Cook the noodles in plain water until desired doneness and drain. Take the dry seasoning pack and very sparingly season the noodles to taste. If you use even a fraction of the pack, it will be too salty, you just need a few pinches. I like the noodles with an egg stirred through (if the noodles aren't hot enough to cook the egg, just nuke it a few seconds), a dash of sesame oil and topped with shredded nori.

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: buttertartz

                                                  I almost always eat ramen dry. Must be a hold over from when my mom served the "Top Ramen" to us as a side dish as kids.

                                                  I actually add the seasoning packet to the water, cook the ramen, then drain. Toss in some quick cooked veggies (lots of mushrooms!), some scallions, protein-du-jour (usually whatever i have leftover), a dash of sesame oil - voila!

                                                  1. re: Ditdah

                                                    By "dry" do you mean right out of the packet, crunchy? I love 'em that way!! As instant as ramen can get...

                                                    btw Ditdah, are you a ham?

                                                  2. re: buttertartz

                                                    I almost always eat mine "dry"--I tend to go with Indomie, Mama, or those Korean brands with no English name at the convenience store down the street. In any case, I just boil, drain, and then add seasonings. The MSG bomb pack? I add a fraction--about half! Maybe I'm just addicted to salt. Oh yeah, then douse liberally with red wine vinegar, or if I have them, I squeeze with lime juice.

                                                  3. I keep different kinds of roast meats (duck, bbq pork, beef tendon) from Chinatown in my freezer. When making ramen, I ususally add a few pieces of meat to the boiling water, then cut back on the seasoning packet. Finish with a raw egg (which poaches in the hot broth) and add some chopped green onion on top. Comfort food!

                                                    1. When I rotisserie a chicken, I will take the leftovers and carcass and throw them in a pot with some chopped onions and carrots. After it has cooked quite awhile and reduced, I will separate the meat from the bones and return the meat to the stock and freeze in ice cube trays, then when frozen, into zip locks.
                                                      So sometimes when I have a chicken ramen, after it's cooked I'll toss in a couple of chicken soup cubes to help it cool and add that extra dimension.
                                                      Sometimes a squirt of sriracha is good too!

                                                      1. I like oriental ramen with a spoonful of peanut butter mixed in and a few shakes of cayenne pepper.

                                                        1. Almost any kind of furikake (shaker of various things, like flaked bonito, seaweed, sesame seeds) works well.

                                                          1. egg swirled in, and rice too, with side of kimchi

                                                            1. almost forgot...I like to throw in tteek ovalettes sometimes and maybe a few kimchi mandus

                                                              1. i know this sounds disgusting, but if you cook up a spicy korean brand, like shin, drop a kraft single onto it and mix it in. i didn't make this up, either. cheese ramyon was readily available in seoul, or rather in the neighborhoods that catered to foreigners. really, sounds gross, but if any of you love grilled cheese sandwiches with kraft singles or other american cheese products, give it a try. they melt beautifully and marry well with the spicy broth. a good proper cheese just won't do. but come on...we're already talking tons of sodium, MSG, and preservatives. mm. my stomach just growled and protested at the same time.

                                                                3 Replies
                                                                1. re: augustiner

                                                                  GAHHH!!! How about a piece of mochi?

                                                                  1. re: augustiner

                                                                    that is soooooooooo not nasty, especially to koreans.....cause we love things like processed cheese and processed meats in our spicy soups.

                                                                    shin ramyun + kraft singles = pretty much budaechigae

                                                                    1. re: bitsubeats

                                                                      Years ago, I had a Korean friend who made Top Ramen then put cheese on the top and microwaved until it was melty. I thought it was disgusting. Might have to try it now...

                                                                  2. Things I add to ramen...? A few frozen shrimp, maybe some left over roast, a few shavings from a frozen salmon steak, maybe some sliced green onions, some really good not-too-salty ham, or even a few oysters or clams. Sesame oil is always good. And here's a twist... Do you know how much fat there is in ramen noodles? So sometimes I pepare a little saifun or some glass noodles with the ramen flavor packet and just stick the noodles in a zip lock bag to store until I can throw them away.

                                                                    However, there is a new kid on the fast soup block in my local WalMart... Ever heard of "Simply Asia" brand? Instead of ramen noodles, it has a packet of cryovac sealed cooked "real" noodles. The one I bought to try had noodles very similar to udon. And it has a pack of veggies, a pack of broth flavoring, a bowl and a spoon...! You have to supply your own napkin. They have a website (I had the soup bowl), but WalMart was cheaper (as I recall) than their on-line prices. I plan on stocking up.
                                                                    http://www.simplyasia.net/

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: Caroline1

                                                                      I like Simply Asia. It's a cut above the usual prepackaged, processed instant stuff I can pack for a work lunch, and the price is reasonable enough to eat it once a week or so. However, I highly recommend packing your own utensil! The little spoon or fork in the package just isn't up to the job. (I wish they'd just pack a cheap pair of chopsticks--can't mess those up too badly.)

                                                                      For cheap, packaged ramen 'bricks' with all the MSG packets and then some, my favorite is Indomie brand--probably you can find this in supermarkets on the West Coast or in Asian markets; here in Maine I mail-order it. For about 50 cents a pack you get noodles, chili powder, "bumbu sauce" powder (?), oil, and some fried crunchies to sprinkle on top. Add some chopped veggies, broccoli slaw, or sprouts and you've got a meal.

                                                                    2. If I have eggs, I'll crack one or two (depending on how much noodles I'm cooking) in the water to poach them. Beyond that, it varies depending on what my mood is and what's available in my kitchen. If I have bok choy, I'll throw some in. For extra seasonings, I'll often use some combination of (again, depending on mood): five spice powder, chili paste, siracha, szechuan peppercorns, ginger. I also will usually (not always) throw some sesame oil on after I take it off the heat.

                                                                      1. Eggs? I've never tried eggs in ramen, but it sounds delicious. Do you poach them whole in the cooking water, or beat them and stir them in after you cook the noodles? I usually drain my ramen, so it's more like a pasta dish than noodle soup, and use just a sprinkle of the salt packet. Nice wet threads of egg would be great with that!

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Kinnexa

                                                                          you can poach the egg in the water, but i'm sure most people just crack the egg in the broth when it's boiling/simmering....stir it up for a few seconds and eat it.

                                                                          1. re: Kinnexa

                                                                            Dropped whole & cooked just long enough for the white to cook through. Soft to runny yolk is a must (at least for the spicy versions of Korean Ramen):-Q

                                                                          2. I have a recipe for ramen pancakes that is good, but you need a gravy for it. Basically you make the soup, drain the broth, make the gravy with the broth, add some egg to the pasta and make pancakes.

                                                                            1. This is so Americanized, but one of my favorites - to an almost cooked package of chicken ramen, I add a little sesame oil, enough slices of Monterey Jack cheese to melt & get all gooey, a bunch of shakes of toasted sesame seeds on top and voila - 1000 fat grams of pure comfort food!

                                                                              1. May sound like a silly question but what kind of ramen do you buy? The Maru Chan packets from the regular store or do you get them from an Asian Market? I am a big fan of the ramen bowls from Fashion Food (www.fashionfoodthailand.com) - they are pretty darn tasty and that way I don't have to lug my entire kitchen to work.

                                                                                My recommendation is to simply fully stock your kitchen with good soy sauce, rice vinegar, oyster sauce, etc., etc., I have a silly amount of various hot sauces to add...and start experimenting.

                                                                                The easiest thing I've found is to get a frozen stir fry mix (hey sometimes I don't want to do prep work just for ramen) and add everything together when you add the hot water. This way the vegetables don't turn to horrible mush.

                                                                                I also like making the noodles and then stir frying them with whatever's on hand.

                                                                                I recommend picking up noodles of all sorts - rice, wheat, etc., etc. They are ridiculously cheap at a decent Asian Market. Pick up some cans of pre-made soup.

                                                                                The roast meats is an awesome idea that I'll try asap. oooo...there's a Chinese BBQ joint in my neighbourhood...hmmmm...

                                                                                1. This has very little nutritional value, but is so yummy- put a big heap of shredded swiss cheese at the bottom of the bowl. Add the noodles and just a bit of the cooking liquid, along with the packet of seasoning. Stir and eat.

                                                                                  1. Trader Joe's sells canned fried onion bits (seasonal for them, unfortunately), and I tend to sprinkle them into everything: eggs, grilled sandwiches, ramen, salads, tomato soup, you name it.

                                                                                    1. I do ramen with a Mexi twist. The key is chopping all the ingredients SUPER fine. Cilantro, jalapeno, onion, and tomato. Drop a couple teaspoons into a hot bowl of soup and voila! Mmmmm . . . delicious! =) My grandpa always made it for us like that. Every now and again I add just a squirt of lime juice.