25 June 2011

Kabuto Noodles (Waitrose) [@KabutoNoodles] [By @SpectreUK]

Kabuto Noodles have only recently come onto a market flush with plenty of different brands and flavours of hot noodle soups in pots. I think these pots are very smart looking and I like the oriental feel to their labels. There are quotes on pots like; “Kabuto noodles are a delicious combination of authentic Asian flavours and quality ingredients prepared with the skill, dedication and discipline of a Samurai Warrior” and “Failure to follow instructions will bring great shame to yourself and your family. There are three flavours available, so I thought I’d try the most dreaded first…

Chicken Ramen flavour

Traditionally speaking I absolutely loath any form of chicken soup, mainly because it doesn’t taste of anything and has the consistency of oily dishwater. I know some people swear by it, especially when they’re ill. Personally I always reach for the tomato soup when I’m feeling a bit off. Anyway, some of the ingredients to this soup were bits of dried chicken, ginger, chilli, coriander, and spring onion. The noodles are long and thin. There was a good helping of noodles in the pot with a bag of dried soup mix, with added dried chicken and vegetable bits. Worried I may bring great shame to anyone near me, I let Cinabar follow the instructions. She added the dried bits from the bag to the noodles in the pot, then added boiling water, leaving to stand for 3-4 minutes with the lid on, and finally stirred, handing me the pot. I left to cool in case I brought further shame by scolding my tongue.

The noodle soup has a very strong smell of ginger to it. There is a good hit from the ginger and a medium heat from the chilli on first taste. Cinabar found the chicken bits to be a little dry, even after soaking in the hot liquid. Personally, I didn’t mind the dried chicken, so each to their own, I suppose. I found this noodle soup very filling indeed. Unlike Pot Noodles, where you can easily eat a sandwich and crisps afterwards, this soup filled me quite happily on its own. I found this to be one of the highest quality pot noodle type soups I’ve tried. And believe me; I’ve tried quite a few over the past year or so for this blog. It tastes more like an authentic Chinese noodle soup, almost restaurant quality, rather than a Pot Noodle that’s supposed to taste like a Chinese noodle soup. This chicken noodle soup is definitely worth a try.

Miso Ramen flavour

Cinabar was concerned that, being a staunch meat eater, I wouldn’t give Kabuto’s vegetarian Miso Ramen a fair try. After some convincing, she prepared the noodle soup for me in the traditional Kabuto way, in order for me to save face if anything went wrong, and I have to admit, I was feeling rather lazy that day. Some of the ingredients in this soup were the usual large helping of noodles, miso, onions, soy, tomato, mushrooms, and garlic.

Once the concoction had sufficiently cooled, and I’d had a lengthy desperate hunt around for any meat in the pot, I found that this noodle soup had a pleasant mild miso taste to it. The onion flavour was quite strong, but not overpowering. This soup didn’t taste like the traditional miso soups I’ve had in Japanese restaurants, but none of those had noodles and generally had bits of tofu floating around in them. In the Kabuto pot there were lots of vegetables and mushrooms amongst the noodles. I enjoyed the subtle miso flavour so much that I drank off the excess liquid. Again I found this soup very filling, and didn’t feel like snacking afterwards.

Beef Pho flavour

One of my favourite flavours of Pot Noodle is Beef flavour, so I had to really force myself not to add tomato ketchup to this noodle soup. The ingredients include bits of dried beef, red pepper, onion, sweet corn, spring onion, ginger, cinnamon, chilli, mushroom, garlic, coriander, and mint. It was a Saturday afternoon and I’d packed Cinabar and Cinabar’s Mom off to the shops so I could sit down and relax to John Wayne’s western, True Grit. I’ve seen the movie before and there’s no doubt it’s a great film, but without Cinabar it meant that I would have to think like a Samurai Warrior and brave preparing this Kabuto noodle soup myself. I quickly decided that if it went wrong; I wouldn’t tell anyone and would only have to live with my own shame. With the absence of a Tantō knife to help me to commit Seppuku if I failed, I took the first thing to hand, which was a red plastic Count Dooku light up and loud frazzle lightsaber. This could be a long and drawn out death scene…

Fortunately for me and my collectable Star Wars lightsaber the preparation of this beef noodle soup went well. I left it to cool and enjoyed the first part of the movie. “I was told you have True Grit” says Mattie Ross in the film to John Wayne’s Rooster Cogburn. No… I have True Grit, the true grit of a Samurai Warrior! As Cinabar wasn’t around to be bothered by the bits of dried beef, I was left to enjoy these on my lonesome. I found this noodle soup to be nice and spicy with ginger, coriander and mint the more dominant flavours. Having said that, this produced a mild taste, which was pleasant, moreish and not overpowering. Again I found this soup very filling; I didn’t miss the addition of tomato ketchup and probably wouldn’t recommend it. This soup and the other two flavours are best left not tampered with, in order for you to enjoy their full and natural oriental type flavours. Just as long as you don’t make a muck of the preparation and have to beat yourself to death with a plastic Star Wars light up and frazzle lightsaber.
By Spectre


Anonymous said...

I love the packaging design.

cinabar said...

I like all the fun comments on the pack too... really made me smile.

Anonymous said...

Yes the packaging looks good, but they are really tasteless. BIG let down. Buy a pot noodle instead. MISO??? Miso let down!

cinabar said...

Yes I agree its different, but I still enjoyed it. Have you tried the Miso soup in Pret? Super yummy!