About a month ago, news of a seductive new culinary sensation hit the internet. Chef Keizo Shimamoto debuted the ramen burger: a hamburger between two buns made of cooked, pressed, and fried ramen.
Naturally, the internet went crazy. Myself included. So last week, after some searching for recipes, I decided to make my own.
More or less, I followed Claire Lower’s recipe on xoJane, but here’s those steps, in order:
[yumprint-recipe id=’2′]So how did it turn out?
R and I joke that I’ve got a black-hole stomach. I have a fairly legendary ability to pack food away. I couldn’t eat more than half of this burger. Between the buns–which are made of an egg and a packet of ramen each–and the beef, I was full by the fourth bite. These things are filling.
And… they’re tasty. They’re delicious, actually. The noodles aren’t overpoweringly seasoned, but provide just enough flavor to keep the buns from being boring. The burger–however I did it–turned out tasty too, with a nice mix of soy sauce and ginger and all those pan-Asian flavors.
That said, this recipe isn’t perfect.
One packet of ramen per bun is just too much. Unfortunately, I’m not sure if a half-packet per bun is enough, which makes the math kinda tricky. Still, for average appetites, you just can’t do one noodle brick per bun, unless you want to explode.
It’s also crucial to not overcook the ramen. Normally, I don’t give a shit about how “done” my instant ramen is–after all, it’s instant ramen–but for ramen burgers, if you let the noodles get too soft, the buns suffer. The noodles fall apart, becoming a starchy glob rather than a beautiful bun of distinct ramen noodles.
Finally, fry hotter and faster. I wanted the outer noodles to be downright crispy. They turned out mildly crunchy. The buns held together, which was a huge accomplishment, but I fried them as long as I could without burning them and they still hardly had the textural dynamic I hoped for. I think frying ’em hotter and faster will get the outside much crispier than the inside, without scorching the noodles or turning the inside to mush.
Still, make no mistake: This is a delicious way to enjoy burgers. I’m looking forward to trying it again and making those changes so as to make an even tastier ramen burger.
Here’s a gallery of pictures from the process. Enjoy: