Instant ramen, of the Maruchan dry brick of noodles in bright orange plastic packaging variety, is a common sight on college campuses across America including the University of Florida. It’s a go-to quick meal during late nights of studying or when Publix seems way too far.
Ramen was originally created by Chinese cooks in Japan and instant ramen was developed after WW2. It is now a beloved dish both in the United States and Japan. The love of ramen has spawned everything from videos of people fixing things with uncooked instant ramen to the ramen burger which features ramen in the place of traditional hamburger buns to ramen museums. However, not everyone is a fan of the dish on UF’s campus.
Michelle Komisarchik, sitting in the Plaza of the Americas, said she would only eat instant ramen if she had to but that regular ramen was not as bad.
UF student Mariana Abastoflor, does not like instant ramen but she said she eats regular ramen occasionally. She said that the reality of a college student’s relationship with ramen may be more complex than the stereotype and that the majority of college students may not even be eating ramen.
Other UF students reject instant ramen but enjoy ramen from one of Gainesville’s ramen restaurants.
“I’ve been to Crane Ramen, and it’s good,” UF student Sarah Danis said. The ramen she orders at Crane includes crab in additon to noodles and broth. Other Gainesville restaurants with ramen include Electric Ramen and Dragonfly Sushi and Sake Company.
Other students enhance their instant ramen with toppings and protein.
UF student and Her Campus UFL member Megan Ngo said she likes to add an egg to her instant ramen.
“Usually I use the one in the little packets, and then I cook it in a pot, boil the water and everything, and after that I put the seasoning in and just add the egg,” Ngo said. “Just crack open an egg and it cooks with the soup.”
Instant ramen cooking techniques and toppings don’t stop there though. Matt Rodbard, Editor in Chief of TASTE Magazine, has an instant ramen recipe that lays out how exactly to cook instant ramen and a list of topping ideas for instant ramen including kimchi, dried seaweed and pickled ginger.
Worried about adding hassle to your go-to weeknight quick dinner? Watch Chef Rie McClenny make a gourmet meal with an instant ramen packet still in just 30 minutes.
Need more ideas? The Mike’s Mighty Good brand offers instant ramen with organic noodles and their website features lots of recipes for easy ramen bowls using their instant ramen.