2010-03-22

Mama "Shrimp (Tom Yum) Flavour"

Brand: Mama
Flavour: Shrimp (Tom Yum) Flavour
Format: brick-in-packet
Packets: three
Identifiables: noodle brick, flavour sludge, soup powder, chili powder
Sodium: 2.42 grams

I really must find a more suitable host body.

This weak, inferior, human shell is vulnerable to all manner of hazards; radiation exposure, temperature extremes, rapid pressure changes, and so forth. That defeats me this time? A viral infection called the "common cold". Bah! Such difficulties will not impede my master plan, however!

It so happens that my master plan includes eating spicy noodle soup. For this reason, I love the well-known Thai dish called tom yum goong. It's got spicy heat and onion, tangy kaffir lime and lemon grass, and tasty seafood. What more can one ask from a soup? Having it ready in the comfort of one's own home in three minutes and with minimal effort, perhaps.

The Mama brand interpretation of this classic dish is not quite the same as the original, but the truth is that it'll do in a pinch. For one thing, it's fairly easy to prepare. The directions – printed, like everything else on the package, against a very shiny packground with pink stripes, making the small text difficult to read – guide one to put everything within the package into a bowl, pour 400ml boiling water over it, and let it sit covered for three minutes. Even taking account this host body's compromised state, I can do this!

The noodle brick seems fairly standard, though with slightly thinner noodles than most ramen. There are three packets, however, and that brings the preparation score dangerously close to being docked back down to a two. One packet has the brand name on it... in Thai. This contains a gritty flavouring paste the colour of tamarind. The other two packets are in a classic pair of shiny side-by-side pouches. one is labelled with the brand name in both Thai and English; this contains what looks like sand with bits of herb in it. The other is also bilingual, but this time it's actually descriptive, warning the unwary eater that it holds chilli powder within.

After three minutes' cooking in hot water, the result is a thin broth with orange dots of oil at the surface, and an abundance of noodles, The flavour is as described above; the sweet lime takes front and centre, with the lemon grass and seafood trailing behind, and a good level of heat throughout. I actually enjoy this particular arrangement, but others may disagree simply because it's not exactly balanced. Thus, I have to say that my verdict is: don't be afraid to include it in your next Ramenbox and give it a try (remembder the CTF discount code!) but don't fill the whole box with this flavour unless you already know that you'll really, really like it.

Now, I'm going to go curl up with a box of tissues and my various handheld game consoles.

Numbers: packaging 3, preparation 3, heat 3, flavour 4, overall 4
Music: Dean Evans - Waterworld (SNES) - Diving

5 comments:

Howard said...

Feel better soon!

Anonymous said...

I am a poor college student who loves ramen but immediately got sick of the usual American brands. One of my sorority sisters introduced me to this delightful dish, and ever since I have been hooked. This was the first spicy dish I ever enjoyed, and now I crave it on a daily basis! Thank you for your website, leading me in the direction of other noodles I may enjoy that won't empty the wallet :)

jenny kim said...

one of my fav's!! this particular noodle is really really good when you add other ingredients. i like to throw in a shrimp at the start of cooking, and at the end, i throw in a handful of chinese vegetables (like bok choy), scallions and an egg! ;)

also comes in a creamy flavor

Ayah said...

xxx

Unknown said...

I realize this is a weeeee bit necro, considering this blog hasn't been updated in about three years or so... but I wanna say thanks for reviewing all these lovely instant noodles.

when I found Mama's Tom Yum in a local store, I gave it a go and it immediately became my favorite instant noodle ever.

alas, it's totally impossible to get all the goopy delicious shrimpy past out of its packet without a bit of scissors work.

after being frustrated by seeing how much flavor I was missing I took to cutting off three sides of said packet, unfolding it over the noodles, and pouring the hot water onto the packet to wash all that fabulous flavor into the noodles. not a bit lost. <3