Saturday, August 5, 2017

Nissin 45th Anniversary UFO Noodle Ume Cha Yakisoba Review

This pickled plum green tea flavoured UFO yakisoba noodle is one of the three limited edition cup noodles that Nissin released in early 2017 to celebrate their 45th Anniversary.  It comes in an attractive package that follows the Mt. Fuji, funky Japanese pop culture vibe shown in all of the anniversary packaging.  I was a little worried that the noodles might turn out to be very sour plum-ish in flavour, but I was pleasantly surprised with the finished product.
The bright red and very colorful festive plastic wrapping the UFO noodles come in.
A closeup of the front of the package.  You can seen the cartoonish pop culture icons at the sides of the package like the thunder god at the left with samurai and bullet train and the sumo wrestler DJ on the right.  The noodles are shown with bright flakes of plum, cabbage and seaweed.  These are called UFO noodles because of the saucer shape of the noodle bowl.
The bottom of the package with calorie and nutritional information.
Ingredients list.
 Unlike the cup noodles, which have the graphics printed onto the side of the cup, the UFO noodles always come in a plain bowl with all of the decor on the cellophane wrapping.
Once the wrapping is taken off it reveals a pretty big lid that is multi-functional.  The lid has preparation instructions, do's and don'ts, and is pretty text heavy.
UFO bowl noodles are not like cup noodles which are typically noodle soups.  These noodles simulate a pan fried noodle concept so there is no soup.  To get your noodles to a ready to eat stage takes a few extra steps.
More of a tilted side view to show the dish/bowl shape of the noodles container.
You only peel the lid half-way back to reveal a noodle block, and a number of ingredients satchets.  This noodle came with a oil / sauce pouch, a pickled plum pouch, and a veggie / seaweed pouch. The noodles are thin and had the cabbage and green onion flakes already on them.
So you add boiling water up to the fill line shown on the inside of the container.  Close the lid for three minutes and then open the little flap at the opposite end of the container.  It reveals a bunch of drain holes.   NEVER peel the lid all the way back on any instant noodle cup product until it is ready to eat.
Now drain all of the water off that was used to rehydrate the noodles and cabbage.  If you peeled the whole lid back you'd have a pretty hard time doing this so this lid is a pretty clever design.
Once the water is drained, you can then add the additional ingredients like the pickled plum and seaweed, and the seasoning oil / sauce.
You're supposed to mix up the ingredients now, but this is pretty hard to do with just a fork.  What I like to do is to close the lid (which is why you don't totally peel it off), then gently shake it about to mix everything together.  The inside of the lid gets a little messier, but things get nicely blended to together.
The nice looking noodles are ready to eat with a light sprinkle of pickle plum and cabbage all around. 
The final product for the mixed up noodles had a nice pickle plum smell to them and the noodles were firm with just enough chew to them.  The seasoning sauce looked more like a seasoning oil with plum tea extract in it.  The whole dish had a more delicate smell and taste to it than I imagined it would have.  It was both different and pleasant to eat with just a hint of the sour plum in every mouthful.  Some people might have wanted a stronger plum / tea taste, but it was just fine for my tastebuds.

More ramen noodle posts and Japanese pop culture.

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