Yes, instant ramen. My daughters are fans. And they have taught me that yes, you can upgrade what has to be one of the cheapest and most easily available food items that you can store in the pantry for months. If you don’t eat meat, you can skip it and this noodle soup will still be delicious.
What flavor of instant ramen can you use? Any! Note, however, that instant noodles are sold in two forms. There are instant noodle packs meant for stir frying and there are those that are designed to be served as a soup. You want the latter because you need the powdered broth. If what you have is a pack of noodles for stir frying, you will need a cup or two of broth. Chicken, pork, beef od even vegetable broth is good.
The cooked pork can be substituted with chicken, beef or even seafood like shrimps or squid. And, of course, while it says “2 slices” in the ingredients list, you can always add more.
And the mushrooms? Fresh mushrooms shorten the cooking time tremedously. Shimeiji was used here but oyster mushrooms, enoki or shiitake will be just as good. If you have dried mushrooms, soak in hot water until softened before adding to the dish.
What type of cheese is recommended? Any variety that melts well (no hard cheeses like Parmesan, in other words). Even processed cheese is good! We all love cheese and I wish I can say that you can add as much cheese as your heart desires. BUT. Do not be tempted to add too much cheese. After it melts, the cheese will thicken the sauce considerably. Going over the top with cheese will turn the noodle soup into a solid mass.
Cheese and kimchi ramen
- 1 pack instant ramen - any flavor
- 2 slices cheese - any variety that melts well
- ½ cup kimchi - with the juice
- 2 slices cooked pork
- fresh mushrooms
- finely sliced scallions
- 1 egg yolk
- chili flakes - to garnish
- In a small pan, cook the noodles and soup pack in boiling water according to package directions.
- When the noodles are partially done, arrange the mushrooms, pork slices and the kimchi (cut into smaller pieces if large) along the edges of the pan.
- Drizzle in the kimchi juice.
- Continue boiling until the noodles and mushrooms are cooked through, and pork and kimchi are heated through.
- With the heat off, lay the cheese slices on top and cover the pan just long enough for the cheese to melt.
- Carefully slide the contents of the pan into a bowl.
- Drop the egg yolk at the center of the bowl.
- Garnish with sliced scallions and chili flakes.
- Serve your cheese and kimchi noodles hot.