Hawaii Saimin and Ramen Noodles

Ever since I have been living in the South Pacific, the meal we rely on for quick fixings, or the easy anytime snack is saimin, otherwise known as ramen noodles. Saimin is the Hawaiian version of ramen, possibly stemming from the Chinese words sai (thin) and mein (noodle). It is usually served with beef, chicken or shrimp broth. My kids grew up eating it, and they would even eat it raw (not sure how good that was for them), but they survived. Click Here to read a great story of how saimin got started in Hawaii.

Actually, there are many ways you can fix saimin or ramen. To make them more healthy, you can add broccoli, peas, diced carrots, water chestnuts, green onions, grated ginger, mushrooms, cabbage, zucchini, celery, green peppers, spinach, diced tomatoes, or any other veggie that can be steamed quickly.

To add more substance, you can add your favorite meat, including cooked salmon, cooked hamburger, diced and cooked turkey or chicken, diced ham or better yet diced spam, bacon bits, can of chili with beans, ho, the possibilities are endless.

My favorite is to add a couple of scrambled eggs to the boiling noodles. You can even add grated or shredded cheese, light cream, mushroom soup, soy sauce, garlic, thyme, rosemary or parsley. Be brave and experiment.

You can also garnish your saimin or ramen with crushed oregano, lettuce or parsley.

If you like hot food, add a bit of curry, cayenne pepper, red chili peppers, horseradish, or tobasco sauce.

Here are some fun stories from "Everybody Loves Ramen" by Eric Hites.
When I was a kid, we had Ichiban-brand ramen, and we called it "Itchy Bum noodles."
~J. Stormwood

Once I had to ship a glass to my brother (in a hurry, too). I had gotten everything ready to go and I was about to add the packing peanuts, when I realized I forgot to buy some. In a frenzy, I searched my cabinets for something to use for packing. When I opened my cuboard I saw I had a good supply of ramen noodles. So I broke up the packages and used them as filler for the package. The glass arrived safely at my brother's house a few days later! Thanks a bunch, ramen!
~ Dan H.

Do you know that if you ate one package per day, you could eat your weight in ramen noodles in approximately two and one half years?

Did you know that one pound of saimin noodles weighs the same as one pound of gold, but can't eat gold (saimin is great for food storage).

Did you know it would take 432,000 packages of saimin noodles to cover a football field. But you would have to pray that it doesn't rain!