Houston food, restaurants and dining review. Urban living, travel, thoughts and other randomness.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Nippon Japanese Restaurant

It seems I go to Nippon Japanese Restaurant on Montrose every time my wife is away. With her pastry classes three nights a week, I'll be going there quite often. Although the sushi there is good, I go for the Japanese Ramen. This authentic little (and I do mean little) restaurant is hampered by limited parking, slow service and dingy decor. But it more than makes up for it by its steaming hot bowl of Japanese ramen.

For those of you who don't know, real ramen tastes very little like the ramen noodles you boiled up throughout college. Chinese egg noodles are used. The broth is dark and delicious: flavored by the boiled egg, pork, and seaweeed. There are different kinds of ramen, and I haven't tried them all, so I can't tell you if they serve miso, tonkotsu, or shoyu ramen. I suspicion the tonkotsu since they do serve it with pork, but I really can't tell, other than to say that I think the miso is creamier than the one served at Nippon. My one complaint? Too much bean sprout. I keep forgetting to ask them to go easy on the stuff.

Compare the following recipe for instant ramen noodles we enjoyed in college:
Boil water for ramen and cook until the noodles are almost done. Drain green beans (do not save the water) and add to ramen. Microwave for approximately 90 seconds or until desired temperature. Drain liquid and add seasoning packet.

with the following INGREDIENTS for real ramen from Bob & Angie:
1kg chicken bones for 1.5 liter chicken soup,1 white onion (leek), 30 grams ginger, 2 liters water, 4-5 tablespoons soy sauce, 3 tablespoons sake, 1/3 teaspoon salt, a little pepper and sesame oil, 4 balls of chinese noodles, 8 pieces yakibuta (chinese pork ham), 4 pieces naruto, 1/2 bunch spinach, 1/2 sheet nori, 1/2 green onion, a little shinachiku (chinese flavored bamboo shoots)

Which would you rather have?


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