Whether you’re a nine-tailed fox or a college student cramming before midterms, ramen has always been your delicious dependable friend. This savory noodle soup has transcended beyond any ordinary bowl of noodles to a Japanese cultural icon. There are festivals, even a museum located in Yokohama devoted to the dish. Nowadays ramen is so popular there are endless configurations to the noodles: bold shoyu, rich tonkatsu, spicy miso, all garnished with delectable toppings such as sweet tender pork. In Japan, it is customary to slurp your noodles and considered rude if you don’t. However, there’s a new tasty craze that’s taken ramen to a whole new level—ramen burgers. That’s right, now you can enjoy ramen without a bowl, broth, or chopsticks by transforming it into a classic American staple. Chef Keizo Shimamoto took these two beloved national treasures and made a hapa burger baby. Ramen burgers are delicacies that aren’t listed under every burger joint’s menu, but fear not for you can make them yourself at home.
Time: 1 Hour
First of all you’ll need your ingredients. We made a ramen cheeseburger, but as I said about ramen earlier: there are endless options. Substitute the beef patty with pork, switch up lettuce with bok choy, add some kimchi for a spicier sandwich. Here’s what we had:
- Pack of Ramen
- 1 Egg
- Ground Beef
- Spicy Mayonnaise
- Soy Sauce
Open up that pack of ramen and boil the noodles in hot water. You’ll need to let the noodles cool for about 15 minutes.
Crack an egg yolk into the noodles or a bowl and mix well. You may add soy sauce or the flavor packet that came with the ramen.
Forming the buns is probably the trickiest step. We had ramekins which are little soufflé and dessert bowls but anything circular would work—smaller bowls, mugs, tins. Mold the buns evenly against the bowls and place a layer of plastic wrap above them. Weigh the buns down with something heavy such as a can of soup or a jar of pasta sauce. Place the forming buns into the fridge for about 30 minutes.
Now that your ramen is shaped, it’s time to fry them up into nice buns. Sprinkle some oil onto a pan on high. Plop the buns on and cook them into a golden brown. Make sure you flip the buns and let them cook on both sides. The time may vary on how thick you shaped your buns. Thinner buns are better because it can be hard to fully cook the inside of larger ramen buns.
It’s burger time! Cook your ingredients: sizzle a juicy patty, sauté some mushrooms, melt that cheese into a gooey blanket. Instead of ketchup, we made a spicy mayo by mixing mayonnaise and sriracha. You are the chef and artist, unleash your inner Remy. Like any other burger, things can get a bit messy but you won’t regret this American Japanese fusion.
Note: Don’t feel discouraged if your first batch of buns didn’t come out perfectly. It may take a few tries to get it just right.