A ramen burger is creating a tasty stir in the Big Apple, where customers are lining up and shelling out big bucks for a burger made with ramen noodles, UPI reported on Aug. 21, while coincidentally, a new book out this month says that ramen noodles may help end world hunger.
The ramen burger is just what it sounds like, a hamburger made with ramen noodles, the lowly grocery store goodie usually considered a staple of college students and families on a budget.
But in New York City, if you make it, they will come, and come they did to try the new ramen burger, which was first featured by chef Keizo Shimamoto at Smorgasburg, a “flea food market” in Brooklyn. The ramen burger is proving so popular, even at $8 each, that it’s helping Shimamoto fulfill a lifelong ramen noodle dream.
“From a very young age, at a time when my brain was still learning how to store memories, I've always loved ramen. As a second generation Japanese-American who grew up frequenting Japan with family, I soon developed a love that would one day encapsulate my wildest dreams,” Shimamoto writes on his website, Go Ramen. Shimamoto also runs a ramen burger Facebook page.
Shimamoto, 35, wants to base a restaurant off the ramen burger and his passion for ramen noodles. The ramen burger itself is made with a USDA prime beef patty cooked medium-rare to well-done and slathered in a secret shoyu sauce. Along with spiced arugula and scallions, the burger is put on a bun formed from ramen noodles.
Shimamoto only made 150 of the ramen burgers the first time around, and they all quickly sold out at Smorgasburg, PIX11 reported. Dozens of people who had waited in line to try a ramen burger were turned away empty-ended and apparently hungry.
And at the same time that people are gobbling up the pricey ramen burgers in the Big Apple, NPR reports that a new book suggests that the lowly ramen noodle, called the “most successful industrial food ever produced” at only a few cents a serving in most other places, could help fight global hunger.
The book, The Noodle Narratives, analyzes the rise of instant ramen, from its birth in postwar Japan to its sales of just over worldwide in 2012. The authors argue that ramen noodles can help alleviate hunger around the world.