Chewy "Thai Rice Vermicelli: Tom Klong (Smoked Fish) Flavour"

Brand: Chewy
Flavour: Thai Rice Vermicelli: Tom Klong (Smoked Fish) Flavour
Format: brick-in-packet
Packets: one-plus-three
Identifiables: noodle cloud, flavour powder, oniony oil, chili powder
Sodium: 1.33 grams

As we all do, I fall into a good few patterns of predictability. Asked to choose a number from one through ten, I will almost always choose five. Presented with objects of equal quality but differing colour, I will almost always choose the purple one. Served two dishes of food, only one of which is spicy, I will almost always eat the spicy one first. Brought to a bagel shop for lunch, I will almost always order a bagel with lox and onions, because I love smoked fish and onions. When I pick up a packet of ramen with more Thai writing than English and a label that incidates that it is spicy and flavoured with smoked fish and onions, the first question is not whether I want it or even if I want it presently, but how fast can it be prepared?

In this case, the answer is, "about three minutes". This, friends, is why I love instant noodles.

Seriously, there are only ten ingredients listed on the packet and four of them are rice, fish powder, onion powder, and chili powder. There's nothing more complex or weird than monosodium glutamate. The package opens easily, and within it is a soft cloud of ultra-thin rice noodles and a packet containing three packets within. No, really, there's a packet packet within the packet of ramen. The three small packets contain a common spread; a foil packet with soup powder in it, a thick clear packet with oniony oil, and a small thin packet with chili powder. The small thin packet was actually a alrge tin packet, though, and it was stuffed so full of chili powder that some was trapped in the heat-sealed edge. I found it a bit endearing.

The directions recommend putting all the ingredients into the bowl and adding two bowls of boiling water. To be precise, they say, "Add 350ml (about two bowls) of boiling water," which indicates little more than a translation error when they meant to say "cups", but isn't it an amusing image? At any rate, one needn't involve a pot to cook anything, which is a definite plus. The result, when cooked, is a bowl of mostly-clear broth with a bit of orange colour from the chili powder and a mass of perfectly-cooked rice noodles.

The flavour of the dish boils down fairly well to what it says on the package. It tastes like smoked fish and not much else, save for some onion. I find that wonderful because I really like smoked fish and onions both. It's rather spicy because I dumped in the entire chili powder packet, but obviously that's en entirely optional component and could be adjusted as desired. However, it has been rather well-established that I am a bit of a masochist and will generally go whole-hog. This, I do for you, loyal readers; this, I do for you.

Numbers: packaging 3, preparation 3, heat 5, flavour 4, overall 4
Music: Tim Follin & Geoff Follin - Silver Surfer (NES) - BGM I

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