Sunday, April 22, 2018

CoCo Ichibanya Curry Cup of Noodles with Fried Chicken

Curry is a Japanese staple.  Ramen is a Japanese Staple.  Curry x ramen = Japanese food power squared, so curry ramen should be pretty tasty.  I tried this Coco Ichibanya Curry Cup of Noodles with Fried Chicken and Cheese totally expecting this result.  This one is made by Ace Cook in conjunction with the Coco Ichibanya Curry House chain of restaurants, and it met expectations.
Front of the cup.  Lots of CoCo brand typography in English and Japanese, and even their logo is on the cup.  Acecook branding is also fairly prominent.
CoCo is a pretty famous curry house chain in Japan, so I'm pretty sure a good product was going to be produced as good PR is better than bad PR, and any PR is better than no PR.  The colouring on the cup is primarily in a bright yellow with black lettering and some red lettering for emphasis.  The cup name and branding run right through the middle, and the photo on the top half of the cup shows some tasty brown coloured curry sauce with chunks of fried chicken in a big spoon.  In the background are noodles in sauce along with green onions and some cooked ground pork.  A very attractive package with appealing food visuals.
Clearer shot of the food picture on the front of the cup.  Emphasis here is on the fried chicken pieces.
Logo and branding are very clear on the lid of the cup.  You know there is fried chicken and even cheese present.  The noodles in the cup are presented on chopsticks with the curry sauce glistening on them.
Logo and bonus cheese graphic.
Back of the cup with nutritional information, ingredients, and cooking directions.
Side of the cup with preparation warnings, website information.
So I popped open the lid of the cup to reveal nice golden looking ramen noodles with a dusting of curry soup powder (most of the powder was at the bottom of the cup).  Present were all sorts of other ingredients, especially the fried chicken pieces.  Other ingredients included red chili pepper, green onion, onion slivers, and ground pork.
Red chili pepper, green onion, onions, ground pork, fried chicken pieces.
Also inside the cup was a foil packet of cheese powder.
I added boiling water and waited three minutes.  It is often better to undercook the noodles a bit as they get soggy if they rehydrate too long.  After rehydrating, I added the cheese powder on top and stirred everything up well.  It definitely needed the stirring to mix in all the curry powder and make sure it thickened up.
I added just a little of the cheese powder to show how finely ground it was, took the picture and added the rest.  The pieces of fried chicken looked really good.
The curry and noodles after mixing.
Another shot of the soup and noodles.
The soup looked a little thin at the start, but it thickened up to the right consistency as the noodles absorbed more water.  When I peeled the lid back after adding the water, there was a nice curry smell wafting out of the cup.  The curry had a slightly sharper, slightly spicier flavour profile than the regular Nissin Curry Cup Noodle, but was very nice.  Most Japanese curries are mostly savoury and a bit of sweet at the same time and this was no exception.  The added heat from the chilies and other spices made this curry flavour distinct.  The noodles were quite firm too and had a good chew to them - definitely felt different than some other noodles I've had.  The fried chicken pieces were quite good, and fried chicken seems to be showing up more in instant noodles lately.  While they are mostly breading, you can definitely taste and feel the texture of the chicken.  All in all, this was a tasty curry noodle cup, and expectations were met.
Closeup of the noodles and chicken.


More cup noodle / ramen reviews and Japanese pop culture.


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