Nissin’s Japanese instant foods get a Halloween makeover in four limited-edition products

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RocketNews 24:

With Halloween becoming an increasingly recognized event in Japan, we’re sure to be seeing plenty of products featuring pumpkins, black cats, ghosts and witches in shops across Japan as we enter the month of October. And the instant food market is no exception to the trend, as Nissin Foods, known around the world for their Cup Noodles, come out this month with four unique Halloween-themed instant food products.

That’s right, you can be sure to get a taste of Halloween this year, even if you have no time to cook!

Supermarkets and convenience stores in Japan may feel just a little bit “darker” than usual, as four Halloween items in distinct black packages come on sale from Nissin starting October 5. You’ll be able to choose from cup noodles, risotto, udon noodles and yakisoba noodles, and the packaging even comes illustrated with cute original Nissin characters like “Pumpkin Mask”, “Gourmet Witch” and “Count Dracula”.

Let’s take a look at the line-up of Nissin’s instant Halloween foods:

▼ Here’s the “Cup Noodle Pumpkin Potage Flavor.” The instant noodles we’re all familiar with have been combined with a soup containing the sweetness of pumpkin and the rich flavor of cheese. The ingredients used include pumpkin, cheddar cheese, carrots and cabbage.
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▼ And this is the “Cup Noodle Risotto Pumpkin Potage Flavor.” If you’re not in the mood for noodles, this item contains rice instead of noodles in the same pumpkin-and-cheese soup.Untitled 2

The other two items don’t exactly use Halloween related ingredients, but they’ve been created with a black color theme to get you into the Halloween spirit.

▼This “Donbei Black Curry Udon” features the usual thick Donbei udon noodles known for their chewy texture, along with a rich, dark pork-based curry flavored soup containing dried minced meat, potatoes, carrots and negi leeks.

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▼ The “Nissin Yakisoba U.F.O. Squid Ink Flavor” is a variation of the popular U.F.O. Yakisoba fried noodles in a black squid ink (Ikasumi) flavor with some anchovy flavoring and red pepper added to give the taste a little spice and depth.

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So, was there an item that caught your fancy in particular? We think the pumpkin potage soup certainly sounds tasty. (But then again, many Japanese people have a soft spot for anything pumpkin, chestnut or sweet potato flavored, especially during autumn.)

Well, whichever one might appeal to you the most, one thing that’s certain is that you’ll be able to (kind of) get into the Halloween spirit in minutes with these instant foods. Maybe you can even have an “Instant Halloween Party” with the items—that’s one party where the cooking certainly won’t be a hassle. Plus, All the noodle items will be priced at 180 yen (US$1.50), while the risotto will cost 220 yen ($1.83), so it’ll be easy on your wallet as well. To everyone trying the Nissin Halloween line-up this autumn, have a happy and haunted instant dining experience!

Asian remedies that will cure your hangover

 

Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup

Audrey Magazine (by Jianne Lasaten):

Sure, Asian glow is one thing to worry about, but what about those nights when things go a bit too far and you end up taking one (or five) more shots than intended? Hopefully you got home safe and sound (that’s what’s most important, after all).

But when you wake up the next day, you have to face an immediate problem. When the world is still spinning and you feel too nauseous to move, you know you’ve been hit with the dreaded hangover. For my friends and I, a comforting bowl of pho usually does the trick. But what helps everyone else?

Buzzfeed shared their list of interesting traditional hangover remedies from around the world. Below, we bring you the hangover cures, Asian style! We have to warn you though, you may have to be a brave one to try a few of these…

Philippines: Balut and Rice

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Ah, yes. The signature “weird” delicacy of the Philippines is also a well-known hangover cure. According to the Travel Channel, balut, which is a developing duck embryo, contains cysteine– a substance that breaks down alcoholic toxins in the liver.

 

China: Congee

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This rice porridge contains ginger, garlic and scallions. All three ingredients combined should help ease those headaches.

 

Japan: Umeboshi

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Umeboshi is a pickled sour plum that is well-known for its health benefits. It contains natural bacteria, enzymes, organic acids and alkaline. These help eliminate excessive acidity in the body.

 

Mongolia: Picked Sheep Eye in Tomato Juice

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Commonly known as the “Mongolian Mary,” this beverage is not for the faint of heart. Tomato juice contains simple sugars to boost your glucose levels back up as well as re-hydrate you after a night of drinking. The significance of the sheep eye? Well, that’s still a mystery.

 

South Korea: Haejangguk

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South Korea definitely came prepared because Haejangguk literally translates into “soup to cure a hangover.” Although the recipe differs in every region, this spicy beef broth usually contains pork, spinach, cabbage, onions and congealed ox blood.

 

Indonesia: Kaya Toast

Courtesy of latimes.com

This traditional Indonesian breakfast will satisfy all of your sweet and salty hangover cravings (ladies, this would probably be just as helpful for that time of month). Warm toasted bread slices are served with salted butter and Kaya Jam, a sweet mixture of coconut milk, sugar, eggs, and pandan.

 

Bangladesh: Coconut Water

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We can’t argue with this one. Coconut water is known to have a significant amount of potassium and will keep you hydrated.

 

Thailand: Pad Kee Mao

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Nicknamed “drunken noodles,” this spicy dish is said to be a favorite among Thai men after a night of drinking. It usually consists of wide rice noodles, ground beef (or other meat), basil and other spices, onions and bell peppers.

Sriracha Black Bean Soup is new at Corner Bakery

 

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FoodBeast:

Corner Bakery is adding a new soup to their lineup that incorporates both east and west. Of course, when most things boast an Eastern kick, they’ve gotta involve sriracha.

The bakery chain is now offering a new Sriracha Black Bean Soup. The vegetarian dish is made with black beans, onions and garlic. It’s simmered in a vegetable stock and splashed with lime, coconut milk and a sriracha sauce.

The soup will be a companion for Corner Bakery’s relatively new Spicy Asian Pork sandwich. The sandwich is made with fire-roasted pork that’s sautéed in a spicy Asian BBQ sauce and topped with cucumbers, a spicy slaw, cilantro and house-pickled jalapeños.

 

Japan sells hot soup through vending machines

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FoodBeast/RocketNews 24:

The Japanese laugh in the face of cold winter months as they have the ability to walk up to a vending machine and warm themselves up whenever they want.

As if the concept of selling self-heating cans of soup isn’t crazy enough, according to Rocket News 24, they are casually sold in Japanese vending machines.

As evident by its machines selling 24-hour burgers and women’s underwear, Japan takes its vending industry pretty seriously. It also looks like corn is a big deal in there, as at least seven of the offered soups are corn-based, along with a few red bean- and rice-based soup options.

The sizes of these soups range from 5.8 ounces for a Chunky Vegetable Soup Minestrone to 9.3 ounces for a drinkable, baked-apple product. The pricing for these soups hover around $1, so you don’t have to break the bank in order to stay warm.

It’s getting pretty cold here in the US as well. Maybe we should have some warm soup available at every corner.

 

10 Asian soups to keep you warm over the holidays

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 Audrey Magazine:

On a blistering cold night, a steaming hot bowl of soup is the tastiest cure to the shivers and well, almost everything else right? Now that winter is full steam (sorry) ahead, here are ten different Asian soups, from the popular to the underrated, that you should try eating and possibly try making this winter!

1. Kuy Teav

Image courtesy of khatiya-komer

A Cambodian delicacy, kuy teav is a Camobidan Chinese pork noodle soup made from a clear broth and flat rice noodles. Kuy teav is usually enjoyed as a breakfast dish from street vendors, but we feel that it’s comforts will last throughout the day!

2. Soba

Image courtesy of kampai.us

Unlike the popular ramen, soba noodles are made from buckwheat flour. Soba can be a year round dish and is typically served either hot and in a soup for winter or chilled with a dipping sauce for summer. Also, soba differs from udon in that soba noodles are thin while udon noodles are genuinely thicker.

 3. Laksa

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A spicy MalayasianChinese fusion dish. There are three main types of laksa: curry laksa, asam laksa and sarawak laksa. Curry laksa has a coconut curry base, while asam laksa has a sourfish soup base, and sarawak has a sambal belacan base. No matter which type of laksa you choose, it’s sure to give you a kick!

4. Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup

Image Courtesy of S.O.F.A.T BLOG

There are many different types of beef noodle soups out there. However, the red-braised beef noodle soup was invented by Chinese refugees in Taiwan during the Chinese Civil War. Today, Taiwan considers this red-braised beef noodle soup a national dish. With it’s tender beef and spicy broth, it is sure to be a comfort during those chilly months.

5. Tong Sui

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Tong Sui literally means “sugar water” in Cantonese and is a soup dessert that is a Cantonese delicacy.

6. Bakmi Ayam

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Bakmi ayam, or often shortened to mei ayam, is an Indonesian noodle soup that is very simple but delicious. The main ingredients are wheat noodles, chinese bok choy (cabbage), and slices of chicken and mushroom. Eaten separately or together with the broth, the soup is delicious either way!

7. Sinigang

Image courtesy of PanlasangPinoy

Sinigiang is a Filipino dish. A tamarind-based soup, Sinigiang is usually sour because of ingredients such as guava and ripe mango.

8. Soondobu Jjigae

Image courtesy of LTHforum

Soondubu jjigae is a spicy Korean tofu soup. It’s typically served in a hot stone pot with other dishes such as rice, meat, or banchan on the side.

9. Milagu Rasam

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Milagu Rasam is a pepper tamarind-based South Indian soup. Supposedly, both the black pepper and tamarind are natural heat-inducing ingredients for the body. Either way, milagu rasam is a tasty method to staying warm!

10. Bun Mang Vit

Image courtesy of PhamVo's Kitchen

Pho is probably the most famous Vietnamese soups, but Bun Mang Vit, a duck and noodle soup, is also another tasty option! The main ingredients here are duck, bamboo shoots and vermicelli noodles, but the lemongrass, ginger and chili give this soup a nice kick.