Thursday, August 16, 2007

Ramyeon 101

Have you noticed that there's always an instant noodle scene in most Korean dramas/ movies? Of course, it shouldn't be a surprise since instant noodle is so much a part of Korean and Asian way of life.

But what I'm totally mystified is......why is it that those innocent-looking packet of instant of noodles looks absolutely extra delicious in the dramas/ movies? I swear it's better than any instant noodle advertisement.

Somehow, my instant noodles never seem to taste as delicious as those cooked in the dramas/ movies. In the recent episode of 'Coffee Prince Shop No 1', Eun Chan and Han Kyul were cooking instant noodles and by the end of that short 3 mins scene, I was positively lusting for a pot of instant kimchi ramyeon. *Tiffany drooling at the sight of the pictures and the thought of steaming, hot, spicy, tasty noodles.

Anyway, after much pondering, I think I've discovered the secrets to those delicious looking instant noodles in the reel world:-

Use a metal pot

Not those expensive Tefal brand, glass pot but a metal pot...preferably a well used metal pot.

Eat straight from the metal pot

Do not eat from proper bowls, just dip into the pot with your spoon/ chopsticks together with your sister/ brother/ mother/ father/ friend/ boyfriend/ husband etc.

For added pleasure, eat from the cover of the pot

Ok..this stumped me completely. Can any Koreans explain why they have to eat from the pot cover? I got to have a good reason to convince my husband to do the same thing.

'Coffee Prince Shop No 1'

And if you are having kimchibap or bibimbap or any bap, just pour all the ingredients and mix them in a big metal bowl. Then as per instant ramyeon, just dig in together straight from bowl.

From 'My Name is Kim Sam Soon'

Besides ramyeon, chocopie is my next favourite snack.

Remember Kim Sam Soon and her chocopie at the top of Mt Halla in Jeju? Gosh, that chocopie looks really yummy. Of course, it probably helps that it was Hyun Bin who gave her the chocopie. I'm sure even liver pie will taste heavenly if it was Hyun Bin handing it to me.

Chocopie also featured prominently in the recent drama, 'Thank You'.

In the final touching episode, the grandfather gave everyone in the village a chocopie. It was his favourite snack and it was his way of saying thank you and goodbye. I thought it was really sad and heart warming at the same time.


Anyway, when I met up with Mr Koh of Sol-mart (a Korean supermarket chain in Singapore) the other day, he told me some interesting facts about instant noodles and chocopie in Singapore.

Because of the increasing popularity of Korean food in Singapore, many big and small supermarkets sell them now. But most of them are probably made in China and not in Korea.

There is however, a subtle difference between those made in Korea and those made outside Korea.

Most instant noodles sold in the supermarket tend to have expiry date of at least 1 year. They are mostly made outside Korea. The instant noodles that Sol-mart imports in are made in Korea for local Korean consumption and hence, the expiry period is only for 6 months or less. There is supposedly no preservatives in the instant noodles because it is meant for local consumption, which is why they have short shelf life. I do think it taste a little better as there wasn't that waxy taste found in most instant noodles.

No msg! Wheee!

Most of the chocopies are also not from Korea. They tend to be a little try and flaky. The one that he recommends is Orion. It taste better and is less crumbly. I love the generous marshmellow portion.

The Orions brand chocopie was used in 'Thank You'.

I really like chocopie. hehe!

Ok..I'm going to have a chocopie now. ^^


Lynn said...

are we expecting those 2 items as the goodies for the gathering???hahahahaaha.....that will be nice if it is......

Anonymous said...

I actually started eating chocopie after watching "Thank You". Don't think the one I have is from Korea though but at least I know what it tastes like hehehe!

Anonymous said...

hi Tiffany, i just recently found your blog and i have to say, you are quite entertaining with your choice of words and subjects..

vegasbyj said...

Hi Tiffany!
I'm one of your silent visitors. I really enjoy all that you have shared on your blog. This entry helped to clarify, if you will, some of my wonderings about all the noodles they eat in the dramas. I can buy and cook the same package of instant noodles at home, but it doesn't taste as good as it looks on tv.

While in a local Korean supermarket I saw the Orion brand chocopies...but did not buy any. Now your post has made me crave for them....*sigh*.

Thanks for all you have shared!

bb said...

me too love love love chocopie! think i've always bought the lotte brand ones... :p

chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie chocopie!!

p.s. keke, i've always thought the koreans eat the noodles straight out of the pot coz they may be feeling abit lazy to wash bowls and stuff :p

and as for the lid, i've always thought it's to prevent the noodles from dripping all over the place...

any koreans want to shed some light on this?

tiffany said...

Lyn....I'm trying...I'm trying...hehe!

tiffany said...

Hi anonymous

I like chocopie from way before. I like marshmellows. ^^

But I never knew there was a difference between those made in Korea and outside Korea.

tiffany said...

Thanks anonymous....

I'm always surprised and really pleased to know that people actually visit my blog of nonsense rambling. Give me a huge ego lift. haha!

Drop by more often and if you're up to it...let me know how to address you. ^^

tiffany said...

Hi Vegasbyj...

I've often seen your name on bb's blog but didn't know you're a silent visitor here.

Yes, isn't it mysterious how those instant noodles that we cook never seemed to be as good as those on TV?

tiffany said...

bb....I like chocopie...and those chicken leg..and those andong chicken...and those kimchi... I'm really craving for Korean food.

As for using pot..sometimes I think it's due to laziness and yet sometimes...I'm not sure...

But I don't my husband will ever consent to eating instant noodles out of the pot together..Sigh...

Yeah..any Koreans who would care to enlighten us on the use of pot cover in instant noodles?

bb said...

... and i'm still trying to see if i can make it to the event. hope it aint too late if i let you know mon/tue :p

tiffany said...

bb..have sent you email yesterday. You can let me know by this week. I know you're busy with work..but try and come lah.

Please? :P

han min chung said...

Hi, Tiff
It's so interesting post.
I've never noticed that Korean drama has so many ramen scene.
Well, I wonder I can give you the answer as far as I know..

1. The metal pot
Most of people eat ramen in the proper bowl, but some lazy people(usually boys) eat ramen straight out of the pot not to wash the bowl. :)
But also if you put the ramen to the new bowl, it's a bit colder than in pot.
So if you really want to enjoy ramen pre-warm up the bowl, feel lazy? then just eat straight out of the pot.

2. The lid
It's preventing dripping the noodles and also ramen is too hot to ear right away from the pot. So use the lid you take a short cooling of noodles.

3. The taste
Most Korean prefer 'Nongshim' Brand.
If you want to try real Korean ramen go to Korean supermarket and buy nongshim brand.
And don't follow the instruction on the ramen package. The time for boiling should be shorter than 3 min and water also should be small amount than the direction.
While you have a first spoonful of noodles, the rest of noodle in the pot will be well done for eating.

4. The chocopie
Actually the orion brand is original. Lotte or other brands are coming to the market quite late after the orion chocopie.
The taste also orion is the best. I wouldn't buy lotte chocopie unless it's really really cheap.

If you don't get it due to my poor expression, let me know. keke.
I am pleased to share the information about the Korean food.
By the way My favorite ramen is 'bibimmen', kind of cold spicy noodle without any soup.

Anonymous said...

I like to check something on my lovely samsoon here...I was trying to find the song where Samsoon was on Mount Halla in the rain or when Hyun Jin-Heon was out buying condoms...

Need the title and singer, korean song very catchy tune, think no inside OST...please help thanks

Anonymous said...

it is okay I found the song finally