The Ramen Story

Y’all know what Ramen (ra-men) is, right?  Some people call it Top Ramen.  They are those fried noodles with flavor packets.  Two companies currently make it (that I know of) – Nissin and Maruchan.

If you haven’t heard of Ramen, let me explain it to you:

1.  Ramen is cheap.  (Like super cheap – think .30 a package)

2. Ramen comes in a variety of flavors: beef, chicken, shrimp

3.  Most college students survive on Ramen (see #1)

4.  Ramen is fast. It cooks in three minutes after the water starts boiling.

5. Ramen is not good for you. (High sodium & high fat = bad combination).

As long as I can remember, Ramen has always existed in the Turtle family.  There are recipes out there – maybe they’ve always been out there – using Ramen noodles.  However, in this house, we eat like a soup…minus the broth.  Baby Gurl has been on a Ramen kick for a week.  Until then, it hadn’t been touched for six months (it’s okay, I’m sure this stuff has a looong shelf-life).

Not everyone likes Ramen.  My BFF ate so much of it growing up, that the thought of Ramen makes her physically sick.  She told me last week that her boy has never had it and if she had it her way, he never would.  We’ll see when her boy gets to college…

Ramen is a great cooking tool.  Back when The Boy was two and Monster Mama was eleven (the Boy’s age now), I taught her how to cook – Ramen, of course.  She was nervous.  I don’t think she had really ever cooked before then.  But when she and Bean Pole (9) would come over to visit, I’d give them both cooking lessons.  The way I figure, it’s easier than macaroni and cheese (which is what Baby Gurl (7) is currently working on).

Aside from the fact that Ramen isn’t good for you (but it’s sooo good), I think Ramen is a good first “I cooked this!” meal.

The truth is, Monster Mama and Bean Pole were guinea pigs for me back in the day.  I was a new mama and I didn’t know what I was doing.  Why not teach 9 and 11 year olds how to cook?  Truthfully, I don’t think it ever dawned on any of us that what we were doing was a good thing – but it was.

Thanks to MM and BP, I was able to introduce cooking to my kids at a much earlier age.  Baby Gurl is cooking Ramen and macaroni and cheese (with help). The Boy is cooking eggs (by himself!).  As time goes on, I invite the kids into the kitchen to help me prepare dinner more often.  I’ve been doing less and less and letting the kids do more and more.  Do they make mistakes?  Yes.  But so do I.  Mistakes are a way to learn.  I’m not sure if it’s the best way…but the lessons learned are usually lasting.

Within the next year, I plan on handing over a whole meal a couple of times a week to the Boy – to plan, shop and prepare all by himself.  I’ve got Baby Gurl in the early stages of this plan already: she created our menu for this week (all of her favorite foods – but it’s a start).

One day…in the not-too-distant future, I hope to share shopping duties with the kiddos.  I already have the kids looking for the best bargains.

I believe it was Barbara who said that our goal as mothers was to work ourselves out of a job.

I think I’m well on way…


4 responses to this post.

  1. I’ve never had ramen. My first roommate and college would make some after her getting back late (really, early) from partying. If her turning on the overhead light (I was in the top bunk) and noise didn’t wake me up, the ramen smell would. It’s an awful smell to smell when you’re trying to go back to sleep!


  2. My husband and daughter eat this stuff… I can’t stand it. It’s SUPER cheap though, so a good afternoon snack. We buy the no name brand, which is every bit as good as the brand name (they tell me), and it’s about 25¢ each. Meh.


  3. […] coils.  Baby Gurl decided to touch said coil while a pot was on the stove heating water for her Ramen!  What possessed her to do this, I don’t know. But never again will I take for granted that […]


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