Ramen of Japan P2

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Ramen1

Ramen noodles

The second key aspect of ramen are the noodles, which are made of wheat and come in many different types. Typical Ramen noodles are long and elastic, but countless varieties exist that vary from thin and straight to thick and wavy. Some ramen-ya allow you to customize your noodle order to some extent such as by allowing you to select a thickness (thin, regular or thick) or doneness (regular or firm).

Ramen1

Toppings

Below is a list of toppings that are commonly:

  • Chashu
    Fatty slices of roasted or braised pork. Chashu is a very common topping, and standard bowls of ramen usually come with one or two slices of it. Most ramen-ya also serve Chashumen which is a ramen dish with additional pieces of chashu. Kakuni (braised pork belly) is served instead of chashu at some restaurants.
  • Menma
    Preserved bamboo shoots with a salty flavor
  • Negi
    Chopped or shredded leeks or green onions. Karanegi is a spicy variation of shredded leeks mixed with chili oil. Negi is a ramen standard, while karanegi is often seen with miso.
  • Moyashi
    Raw or cooked bean sprouts add sweetness and crunch.
  • Tamago
    Hard boiled, soft boiled, raw and marinated eggs are all popular toppings on any type of ramen.
  • Seaweed
    Various types of seaweed such as wakame and nori are commonly added to all types of ramen.
  • Kamaboko
    Slices of steamed fish cake. One type of kamaboko that is commonly served on ramen is naruto (or narutomaki), a sawtooth edged, white fish cake with a red or pink spiral design on it.
  • Corn
    Canned corn is often paired with butter and served on miso or shio ramen.
  • Butter
    A thick pat of butter adds creaminess and depth. Typically added to miso or shio

    Side dishes

    Though ramen can be considered a one dish meal, many ramen-ya also serve a selection of side dishes in addition to their noodles. The offerings vary from shop to shop but virtually all ramen-ya serve gyoza (potstickers). These Chinese style, pan fried dumplings come five or six to an order and are eaten after being dipped in a mixture of soy sauce, vinegar and rayu (hot chili oil), all of which are usually available on the table and combined according to your taste. And of course, nothing complements a steaming hot bowl of ramen like an ice cold beer.

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