It tastes yummy when everybody eats together!
Title: Natsume Yuujin Chou Nyanko-sensei Recommended!? Udon 夏目友人帳 ニャンコ先生推薦!?うどん
Price: 892 Yen (w/tax)
Available: 12 April 2012
Animate Online Store Link: http://www.animate-onlineshop.jp/pn/pd/1147776/
Box size: about 200x140x40mm
Contents: Udon noodles (half raw) 1 package serves 2. Noodle sauce 2 packages. うどん(半生)1袋2人前・めんつゆ2袋
Free gift: chopsticks (185x35mm) with 3 cover designs.
Best before date: approx. 120 days after manufacture.
What is udon? (from wiki):
Udon (饂飩?, usually written as うどん) is a type of thick wheat-flour noodle of Japanese cuisine. Udon is usually served hot as noodle soup in its simplest form as kake udon, in a mildly flavoured broth called kakejiru which is made of dashi, soy sauce (shouyu), and mirin. It is usually topped with thinly chopped scallions. Other common toppings include tempura, often prawn or kakiage (a type of mixed tempura fritter), or aburaage, a type of deep-fried tofu pockets seasoned with sugar, mirin, and soy sauce. A thin slice of kamaboko, a halfmoon-shaped fish cake, is often added. Shichimi can be added to taste.
The flavor of broth and topping vary from region to region. Usually, dark brown broth, made from dark soy sauce (koikuchi shouyu) is used in eastern Japan, and light brown broth, made from light soy sauce (usukuchi shouyu) is used in western Japan. This is even noticeable in packaged instant noodles, which are often sold in two different versions for east and west.
I bought this item for the fun of it ^^;; and as usual got busy and didn’t get to try it out until it was nearing the expiry date lol~ so you can say I was quite unprepared. Unlike instant noodles, there are recommended condiments and other ingredients to make a bowl of plain udon more complete and delicious.
Back of the box with all the ingredients and cooking information! There are 2 ways we can enjoy the udon. The hot soup way and the cold noodles way. For the hot soup version, spicy ginger (薬味は生姜) and chopped green onions (ねぎ) were recommended to go with it. And the cold version, spicy ginger, thinly sliced green onions, shredded seaweed (海苔) and/or quail egg (うずらの玉子).
Hehe cute box. I think I’ll cut that bit out to make into a bookmark or badge.
Here I am again, battling the date of expiry :D Well, I managed to eat it on the date itself lol~
Package contents… ooo I like this cute design. :D
Woo~ 1 packet of noodles for 2 and 2 packages of sauce + a pair of chopsticks. They should give us 2 pairs, shouldn’t they? Since it is meant for 2 servings :P
Close-up of the sauce. Well, one of the descriptions says “full bodied and aromatic”.
How to eat. For soup version, the ratio is 1 part sauce : 10 parts soup. For dipping/cold noodle version, is 1 part: 3 parts soup.
So cooking begins… This was the first time I was cooking udon noodles. I don’t cook much nowadays since mum does most of it :P
Anyway, I was supposed to boil the noodles in 2 litres of water. First 2 minutes in high heat and then in low heat. Total about 13~15 minutes. But the saucepan I used was too small orz;; so halfway through, I transferred it to a big wok. The water quickly turned into a thick and murky liquid and it made we wonder if I was doing it wrong (ToT) I had to add more water along the way. Finally after the noodles seemed to be cooked, I got them out of the wok. The remaining liquid looked kinda… … …
Since there were 2 ways to enjoy the noodles, I dunked a portion into iced water…
And the other portion into a bowl…
Added the sauce and soup to the noodles. It tasted quite salty and boring by itself ^^;; The instructions were right… additional condiments were necessary but since I was unprepared…
I could only add a hard boiled egg (the ramen I ate before had one!) and some shredded seaweed (nori) to it. I added a little bit more hot water to make it less salty.
Well, the egg made a HUGE difference and gave the udon soup a much richer flavour.
I didn’t use the disposable bamboo chopsticks. But at the end of the meal, I was relatively satisfied like Nyanko-sensei shown here.
I kept the cold portion for the next meal.
Mixed the sauce when it was time to eat it…
And dumped loads of seaweed inside since I don’t have the rest of the condiments suggested.
Unlike the soup version, it was quite bland but salty without the egg and other suggested ingredients. FAIL. orz;;
The consolation was that the hot soup version tasted pretty good thanks to the egg :D But I’ll definitely TRY to pay more attention to the expiry dates next time ^^;; cos it had potential to taste good but I spoiled it by being unprepared.
Found a cute little 4-cm figure of Nyanko-sensei based on the illustration! Pity it is sold out though. If I’m not wrong, it should be an Ichiban-kuji prize figure released back in January 2012. Nyanko-sensei sure has tonnes of merchandise. The anime and manga is so popular, I wonder why they don’t make more general release scaled figures of the human characters.