ramen

Step aside, Goku! Vegeta protects Earth from giant vegetables in new Dragon Ball ramen ad 【Video】

Even though spikey-haired Goku is undeniably the protagonist of classic (and soon to be new) anime Dragon Ball, we’re not sure it’s entirely accurate to call fellow Saiyajin Vegeta a “supporting character.” That’s because the widow’s peak-sporting martial artist would tell you that he’s actually the strongest fighter in the Dragon Ball universe, and his prideful insistence on doing things his way means that “supporting” others isn’t something he’s particularly amicable to doing.

Maybe that’s the reason that while Goku and the villainous Frieza are hawking cola, Vegeta is instead endorsing Cup Noodle’s new vegetable-packed variety of instant ramen, and starring in an action-packed, cabbage-crushing commercial while he’s at it.

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There’s something hiding beneath this mountain of ramen toppings, but it’s not ramen

Ramen is pretty well-known around the world as a hearty soup of plentiful ingredients. Sure there are variations from country to country, but at the end of the day, it’s all just noodles and broth with the necessary toppings to add character.

At least that’s how it used to be, before one ramen restaurant felt bold enough to reinvent the wheel and take the “men” (as noodles are called in Japanese) out of ramen. But what did they put in place of the lovely noodles that traditionally define ramen?

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Lotteria continues to try making burgers out of noodles, this time they brought rice to the party

Despite a rather weak track-record for its hamburgers with patties of noodles, fast-food chain Lotteria is back at it with the Moko Tanmen Burger. This time around they’ve also come up with the Moko Don Burger which uses a wad of rice as the patty. Good thing Dr. Atkins isn’t around to see this.

They say the definition of “insanity” is doing the same thing twice and expecting different results. We’re not sure what to call RocketNews24 reporter Mr. Sato then, because he is returning to Lotteria for a fourth time to try these noodley sandwiches in hopes of some redemption.

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Finish your bowl and your wildest dreams come true: We visit Yume wo Katare ramen shop in Boston

I’m going to be honest: I’m not a huge fan of going out to eat. It’s expensive, loud, usually not very healthy, and the stress of tip calculation gives me nightmares. In order for me to want to eat out, the place has to be special. It has to offer an experience that I would be unable to get anywhere else.

Yume wo Katare in Boston does just that. It’s an authentic Japanese-style ramen restaurant with a unique twist: you’re supposed to eat your massive bowl of ramen with a dream in your heart, then when you finish, you stand up and announce your dream to everyone inside. The waiters then judge your bowl based on how much you finished, and if you ate a lot then your dream just might come true.

Hearing that, we had to give it a try. So come along with us on our visit to Yume wo Katare!

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Ramen as religion? Gainax co-founder’s game has you run noodle restaurant with divine help

Anime studio Gainax has had a steady stream of animated successes since catching lightning in a bottle with 1995’s Neon Genesis Evangelion. Eva was actually Gainax’s grand return to animation, though, ending a four-year drought in which the studio didn’t produce a single anime of its own.

Gainax wasn’t spending those four years slacking off, though. The company branched out into video game production, with its biggest hit being Princess Maker, in which the player serves as guardian for a young girl in a medieval fantasy setting. The brainchild of Gainax co-founder Takami Akai, who also handled character designs for the game, Princess Maker was so popular that six sequels were made, and the franchise is credited with helping to popularize the “rearing” genre of Japanese games, in which gamers take care of an in-game character or pet as it grows.

It’s now been eight years since the last Princess Maker title was released, but Akai is back with a new game that deals with a subject close to the hearts and stomachs of many people: ramen.

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Pikachu instant ramen costs less than a buck, would be awesome even without the free stickers

If you have a penchant for eating right, you’re no doubt familiar with the importance of a balanced diet that includes all of the major food groups. But even if you’re making sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, have you got the Pikachu food group covered?

Sure, you already know how to make a Pikachu burger, but if you’re looking to up your Pokémon intake (and skip having to do any real cooking yourself), you can now buy quick, convenient, and adorable Pikachu ramen.

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Halal ramen comes to Tokyo with Asakusa restaurant, and it’s so good anyone will enjoy it

For decades, the international perception of ramen was that it was something for lazy college students to buy in bulk for when they wanted a quick, hot meal, with only minimal thought given to flavor or presentation. And while ramen does sometimes take that form, assuming it’s all like that is sort of like basing your whole image of pizza on microwavable frozen varieties.

Thankfully, there’s a ramen renaissance going on, as the rest of the world is getting onboard with just how delicious Japan’s favorite noodle dish can be. In response, some restaurants in Japan are adapting to make their food more accessible to foreign visitors, such as this restaurant in Tokyo that serves halal ramen.

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Chef and restaurant owner shows how to eat a bowl of ramen like a pro 【Video】

It seems to be a pretty well-known fact nowadays, but in case, you haven’t heard: slurping while eating is totally cool in Japan. One of the most commonly slurped foods is the delicious noodle dish ramen. Lately ramen has started taking off globally too, with restaurants popping up all over the place. So before things get too crazy, one ramen shop owner wants to teach you how to eat a bowl of ramen.

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The legality of adding free green onions to your ramen

Lots of restaurants offer condiments for customers to use freely, but how “freely” are they actually meant to be used. For example, one ramen shop in Japan had a poster offering to let customers take as much green onion as they want, until someone came in and did just that.

The patron piled on about two bowlfuls of diced scallions per single bowl of soup, because apparently that’s the way he likes it. After a few repeat visits the staff interceded and asked that the customer cool it with the onions.

So, who is in the right? Was the gluttonous customer abusing the kind offer of the restaurant, or should the shop stand by its explicitly written offer? Japanese legal website Bengoshi News called in a lawyer to find out.

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Vegetarian ramen in Tokyo? Not only is it available, it’s apparently pretty great too!

Japan is filled with excellent food, but one of our absolute favorites is ramen. There’s just something (possibly everything) about it that’s absolutely delicious. That said, it does present a problem for vegetarians and vegans, since even the broth uses a fairly copious amount of animal products. Now, you may not care about that, but maybe you have a few friend who do. Or maybe you’re just looking for new takes on traditional food. If so, T’s Tantan, a vegetarian ramen restaurant, is just what you’ve been looking for.

We recently sent one of our Japanese writers to check it out, and now you can read his report below and then go try it out for yourself! Or at least tell all your vegetarian friends about it. We promise they’ll love you if you do!

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We try some chicken ramen-flavored ice cream at Chikira-House in Osaka

Alongside Kit Kat bars, carbonated beverages, and potato chips, ice cream is one food Japanese flavor engineers love to monkey with. In the past we’ve seen frozen desserts flavored with great tastes such as scallops, vegetables, and pork.

This time we caught word of a little shop in Shin-Osaka Station offering travelers the cold and creamy taste of chicken ramen-flavored ice cream. So we hopped a train over to check it out and grab a self-heating chiki-bento while we were at it.

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Website lets you eat ramen with handsome actor – Great for fans, sort of awkward if you’re not

Pretty much ever since it was invented, men have been the target market for instant ramen. That’s slowly starting to change, though, as companies are finding out that plenty of women, too, are interested in a hot, tasty meal that only takes three minutes to prepare.

Those three minutes, though, can seem awfully long when you’re sitting by yourself with nothing to do while you wait for your noodles to cook. So, Nissin, to celebrate the start of its new line of healthier, more cosmopolitan instant ramen aimed at women, has set up a special website where a handsome Japanese actor will keep you company while you cook and eat your instant ramen.

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Fried chicken teams up with instant ramen in this cup of noodles fit for a king

There’s a popular Japanese TV show whose protagonist, a wandering gourmet with a healthy appetite, often finds himself looking over a restaurant menu while trying to make an agonizing decision about which of two tempting entrees to order. Often, he resolves the crisis by following the advice encapsulated by his catchphrase, “When you can’t decide which to eat, have both.”

That also seems to be the philosophy behind Nissin Foods’ newest product: instant ramen with fried chicken.

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Drew Barrymore arrives in Japan, begins quest to eat all of Tokyo’s delicious food 【Photos】

We recently looked at a commercial in which model Miranda Kerr gives in to the temptation of a mouth-watering tonkatsu pork cutlet lunch. Kerr isn’t the only celebrity with a craving for Japanese cuisine, though.

Drew Barrymore is in Japan right now, and while we’re sure she’s got some sightseeing and interviews on her schedule, what she seems most fired up about is the food, as the actress looks to be on a mission to sample all that Tokyo has to offer her taste buds, from cheap ramen joints to Michelin-ranked fine dining.

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Since chocolate ramen was so good, we went back for … strawberry ramen! 【Taste Test】

Readers who saw our story about the chocolate ramen we tried last month were probably able to tell that we were quite impressed with the unusual noodle creation. So when we heard that the very same ramen shop Menya Musashi had come out with yet another singular ramen dish, you can bet our interest was piqued. This time, the ramen involved fruit — yes, we were ready to make another visit to their shop in Shinjuku to try their … strawberry ramen!

But do berries and ramen mix well? We were about to find out!

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Rice balls, sushi and ramen: Japanese women share what they’d eat for their last meal

We all have our favorite foods, but have you ever thought about what you would choose to eat if you knew that would be your last meal? Would you want an exotic delicacy or would you rather have a familiar taste before you shuffle off this mortal coil?

A Japanese website recently polled a group of women to ask them what they would order for their last meal and we’ve got the results below the break.

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Tokyo ramen shops trying serving “boob ramen,” ends up looking like “phallic ramen” instead

Japan, like most of the world, loves boobs. Sure there are disagreements over whether or not anime breasts are too big, or real-life breasts are too small, and sometimes the whole boob-obsession can borderline on creepy, but at least for the most part it’s usually pretty easy to tell what is and isn’t supposed to be a breast.

Except now. To celebrate the latest release in the Senran Kagura cute girl-ninja fighting game series, ramen shops all over Tokyo are serving special, limited-time only bowls of “boob ramen.” While that may sound awesome and hilarious at first, unfortunately the reality is quite different. Just take a look at what they’re offering.

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Dutch restaurant’s odd ramen with soybeans has one ingredient we didn’t expect, lacks one we did

As the cuisine of one country becomes popular inn others, sometimes it picks up new ingredients and variations of part of its journey around the globe. For example, spaghetti bolognese is incredibly popular in Japan, but so is pasta with mentaiko (spicy cod roe).

The fact that the latter isn’t something you’d ever find in an authentic Italian restaurant doesn’t make it any less delicious. So when our Japanese-language reporter Yuichiro spotted a restaurant in the Netherlands advertising ramen with one very unusual ingredient, he decided to give it a shot. Little did he know, though, that the surprises were just beginning.

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What’s next after green tea ramen? Why, chocolate ramen, of course! 【Taste Test】

Ramen, understandably, is one of the Japanese foods that foreign visitors (and locals too, for that matter) find hugely appealing, and there’s certainly no shortage of ramen shops or unique ramen flavors to be tried in Japan. Now, you may recall that back in November last year, we brought you news of the very interesting matcha green tea ramen from Menya Musashi. Well, this month, it looked like it was time to make a repeat visit to Menya Musashi, to have some… chocolate ramen!

Yes, it’s Valentine’s Day week and everything is chocolate themed in Japan at the moment, so why not ramen too, right? We definitely weren’t about to miss this dish that combined two of our favorite foods!

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As Keanu Reeves sightings continue in Tokyo, we ask: Got time for a bowl of your favorite ramen?

I’ve always felt a certain bond with Keanu Reeves, seeing how we’re both graduates of San Dimas High School (me in real life, and him through his portrayal of Theodore “Ted” Logan in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure). So I was a little bummed when the Hollywood actor came to Tokyo but didn’t call me up to hang out with him in Akihabara.

I’ve got to say, my feelings are now even more hurt, since this new batch of photos of the good-natured Reeves posing with fans in Japan makes it seem like the RocketNews24 staff are the only people the actor hasn’t spent time with during his visit, despite the fact that we’d be more than happy to hook him up with a meal at his favorite ramen restaurant, which has a chain right by our office.

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