I have a love hate relationship with instant noodles.
I love instant noodles because they are incredibly delicious. This entire post is written on the basis that instant noodles are delicious, so if you disagree, please pretend to agree or refrain from reading further/commenting. Any comment that is even remotely similar to “No, instant noodles are not delicious bla bla bla..” will be deleted without any explanation given. Not even puns will be tolerated, so don’t test your creativity in tickling me the wrong way. I am serious about this.
I hate instant noodles because they are incredibly unhealthy to eat. Regardless of how you cook them and what ingredients you add to balance it out, there is no way to make an instant noodles meal a healthy one. There is unhealthy instant noodles meal, and then there is super unhealthy instant noodles meal.
I try my best to avoid buying instant noodles when I go grocery shopping. I really do. Sometimes I am more successful when I can go for a few weeks without touching them. Sometimes I fail big time and stock up more than I should. You probably can guess by now, this is going to be a story of the latter.
I bought 2 types of instant noodles last Saturday. Prior to this, I have successfully avoided these delicious little monsters for close to 2 months. I guess a combination of feeling pissed with the then old phone plus trying my best to avoid cake baking ingredients left me with next to no mental defense against the instant noodles packagings.
Every time I buy instant noodles, disaster happens. In an ideal world, instant noodles can be stored for a long time, so I don’t necessarily have to eat them that frequently. But the world we are living in isn’t ideal. In the world we are living in, the very sight of instant noodles lying around will botch all my plans of cooking healthy meals. Much like my new electric mixer, those noodle packets will plant voices in my head, telling me things like: “Why settle for mild flavors when you can have overpowering MSG flavors with us?” and “You’ve had a long day, you need to eat yummy food!” and then the rest is history. It happens every single time.
Let me tell you about the 2 types of instant noodles that I bought.. and consumed..
1. Daddy Mee
This is a local brand of instant noodles, came all the way from Sarawak. By the way, mee is the Malaysian/Singaporean word for noodles. I was first introduced to this awesome thing by my housemate (now ex-housemate) a few years ago. Before, I was always procrastinating between Maggi, Mamee or Cintan when I wanted to get local brand of instant noodles, but after I had my first taste of this, I never bothered with that three inferior brands anymore. I don’t care if RamenEater rated those Mamee Chef cup noodles as number 1. To me, Daddy Mee is the indisputable Number 1 instant noodles in Malaysia.
When we first saw them on Jusco shelves a few years ago, these bad boys became our weekly purchases. But they were only around for a few months, then Jusco stopped selling them. It made me very sad. I knew I could never again have another Maggi or Cintan and enjoy them. So I stopped eating local instant noodles altogether and switched to the Korean ones.
Last week, I saw a bunch of them on the shelves in AEON again! And to make matters even better (or worse), There was a printout on the shelf that showed 1 FOR RM 3.99, 2 FOR RM 5.90. Of course I went for 2! After all, I don’t know when they will be gone from my life again. When I grabbed these noodles, I imagined them telling the other local brands on the shelves: “See, this man chose us. Told you guys we are the best! Whose your Daddy now?”
Each pack comes with 5 individual packets, so I now have 10 individual packets of Daddy Mee. I quickly cooked 1 packet that day for lunch. You see, the good thing about this Daddy Mee is, the piece of noodle is bigger compared to other local brands. With other local brands, I need to cook 2 packets to make a meal for myself. With this guy, 1 packet plus other ingredients is enough (this also means I can have 10 Daddy Mee meals now). So, not only is it more delicious, it is also good value for money!
As with all instant noodles, I always try to hoodwink myself (and hopefully other people) that I am eating healthier by adding vegetables and some other stuff (fish ball in the picture below) to the noodles. Sometimes we get those oil sachets along with the seasoning powder sachets. I never use the oil sachets, I always replace those processed oil with a glug of olive oil. But the seasoning powder, no way I am going to NOT use it. Only an imbecile will buy instant noodles and discard the seasoning powder sachet, and I am no imbecile. Seriously, 90% of instant noodles’ awesomeness is contained in that tiny little seasoning powder sachet.
By the way, a note to Mun: yeah I blanched the fu kwai choy, it tastes 95% similar to choy sum, but it has a slightly bitter aftertaste. I’m no food expert, that’s the only reasonable description I can come up with.
2. Green Tea Chlorella Noodles
I found these guys in the Organic section of the supermarket instead of the Korean foodstuff section. I don’t know if this is even remotely possible. Organic instant noodles. Sounds like a sham to me. Look at the Korean words printed on the package, not that I know how to read them.
This is the first time I encounter organic instant noodles. So I thought, maybe I should test it out and see whether it is a sham or not. I have conveniently forgotten that I already have my 2 x 5 of Daddy Mee in tow. If the noodles taste delicious then it is a sham, because I am convinced there is no way organic (a.k.a healthier version) instant noodles would be able to taste as delicious as the usual ones.
I was surprised when I cooked these organic noodles. They don’t seem too… horrible. There was very little sign of wax. You know, those white foams that always float to the surface when instant noodles are boiled, those super unhealthy stuff that we are supposed to discard with the water from the first boil? Hmm… interesting…
As usual, I added some vegetables, and this time I added assorted balls (chicken balls and fish balls) to the noodles. I was thinking of Princess Ribbon when I wrote assorted balls. Instead of the half sachet technique, I used the whole sachet of seasoning powder. Surprisingly, the soup remained clear.
Well, the soup was rather spicy, like how any typical Korean instant noodles should be. But it was also rather… subtle. It was not too overpowering like the more popular Shin Ramyun. It actually did feel like a soup with natural flavors, albeit just slightly.
Hmm… maybe it really is something else… But it is delicious, and going by my measurement yardstick that if it is delicious then it is a sham, I’m not quite sure if it really is organic instant noodles.
I suppose I wrote this post just to make myself feel better for having instant noodles for dinners again. When I was proofreading, it actually doesn’t sound too bad at all.
To put even more positive spin to things, I spent an entire week not eating out for dinner. I had that legendary pumpkin cake and oats for dinner Sunday and Monday, Daddy Mee Tuesday, the homemade fries with strawberries Wednesday, organic noodles Thursday, and Daddy Mee again Friday. This is a new record for me, yay!
Maybe now I should attempt to resist the instant noodles, leave them alone for a bit and cook something healthy for dinners this coming week..
Or maybe I should finish them up quickly. The sooner I eat them, the sooner they will be gone, then I can go back to not eating instant noodles.
I will try very hard not to replenish Daddy Mee when I run out..