Noodle Bird!

An excursion for ramen inspired the first page of a comic about a new angry bird named, what else but….. Noodle Bird!

Noodle Bird is definitely¬†my kind of super hero. ūüôā

Noodle Bird

Authors of Noodle Bird

Noodle Bird’s authors hard at work.

Rainy Days & Ramen

Our little household is obsessed with ramen. We are so over Tutti Melon and almost over pho from Out the Door.¬† SF Weekly recently ran an article on ramen and it’s growing following and I was almost indignant that other people were into ramen as well.¬† How dare they?¬† This was our little secret obsession.¬† But, I suppose this is how food trends work.¬† We should just be happy that we were eating it before it seemingly caught on fire. The great thing about people wanting ramen is that yummy ramen joints are opening all over the Bay Area.¬† We have checked out many of them and will be making the rounds of the others suggested in the SF Weekly article shortly.

We love ramen “loodles”, as Ria calls them and will go to great lengths to slurp up a good bowl of “loodles”.¬† The rains have come early this year and ramen is the perfect antidote to pouring rain and howling winds.¬† Pouring rain and howling winds didn’t deter us from driving to San Mateo for ramen at Ramen Dojo, a pint sized shop that serves ramen in three different soup bases (soy, garlic pork & soy bean) and different levels of spiciness.¬† If there is a food that can satisfy your soul and truly comfort you, it’s ramen (especially on cold, wet days) and the ramen at Dojo’s is especially amazing.

On a recent visit, Ria, in addition to her ramen ordered 2 bowls of dumplings (she did not finish her ramen and her father very willingly finished it for her).¬† Melt in your mouth, full of porky, salty, uber-flavorful dumplings.¬† She ate one and looked at me and said – “These are better than the dumplings we make at home” (Easy-peasy dumplings).¬† Downside of raising a little foodie – she will eventually figure out that the food I make at home is not the best in the world.

Debbie from Frisco Kids after reading our Japantown playdate post suggested we try out the Taiyaki (Japanese fish shaped, pancake-like hand held treat filled with red bean, chocolate and a variety of other fillings) at Sweet Breams (get it?) in San Mateo.¬† The Taiyaki at Sweet Beams are mini sized and you can order 1/2 a school (six) or any multiple of that with a variety of fillings.¬† They also have a “catch of the week” flavor and in the past have had unique flavors like White Chocolate Macadamia,¬† Almond Pear and Black Sesame.

Rain notwithstanding this was a pretty awesome food adventure.

Dive In, The Ramen’s Fine!

This was inspired by the “Eating Your Words Challenge“. Thanks to¬†Savor the Thyme and¬†Tangled Noodle for cooking up this contest. Looking forward to seeing the other creations!

Eat Your Words Challenge 2010

Ramen is another super simple dinner to put together, a great way to use up stuff in the refrigerator and popular with everyone in my family. In this case, it also turned out to be a great canvas for a little creativity.

I had broth on hand from ¬†preparing a whole poached chicken earlier in the week. We pretty much always have eggs, carrots, frozen peas, and ham or some sort of leftover meat hanging around, and our little patch of cilantro in the garden is still doing its thing. The only last minute shopping Luca and I had to do was to pick up some ramen noodles, scallions, baby bok choy. We happened to see some fish cake, so we grabbed that too. But sky’s the limit as far as what you can throw in — let your leftovers be your guide!

Ramen in 3 Easy Steps

1. Precook your noodles, then put them into ice water to stop their cooking. When cool, drain. (I tossed mine with a little scallion oil I had on hand).

2. Prep all your condiments.

3. Arrange your noodles and goodies in a big bowl and pour the hot broth over.

Luca loves the opportunity to put stuff into his soup, so I always make sure to bring extras to the table for everyone.

Hard Boiled Eggs

If you want to include a hard boiled egg, The Gourmet Cookbook has the most fail proof recipe I’ve found: Cover eggs with cold tap water by 1.5 inches. Partially cover and bring to a full boil. Reduce heat to low and and cook 30 seconds. Cover and turn off heat and let stand 15 minutes. Run under cool water to stop their cooking. Refrigerate until ready to peel and use.