This September, as a new university semester starts, I can’t help but reminisce about the year I started college.
I learned about and came to love so many unexpected things outside of the classroom that first semester “away from home”. I met many interesting people, read a ton of coursework, listened to new music, and fell recklessly in love.
But the one thing that has stayed with me, that I always crave and seek out come this particular time of year is…
Gimme an R!
Gimme an A!
Gimme an M!
Gimme an E!
Gimme an N!
What’s it spell? RAMEN!
(Please note: I am a much better cook and eater than I ever was a cheerleader.)
I was quite a fan of the delightful Nissan Cup Noodles. I always referred them as “Cup O’Noodles”. A dorm-mate taught me to use less water than the recommended fill line and to let the noodles sit for almost double the recommended time. Doing so made the flavor more intense and the noodles puffier / creamier and all around the end result was an even better treat. I still prefer to eat Cup Noodles prepared this way. I loved peeling back the label on the cup just halfway to reveal all the freeze-dried veggies. As far as dorm snacking went, those bright little dehydrated peas were just about the second happiest thing to behold (the first being a steaming cup of pre-class coffee). Other dorm-mates had their favorite preparations. One fellow used traditional “brick” ramen and in a small pot cooked up a ramen and hot dog concoction. He seemingly never ran out of hot dogs and I always found that to be amazing. One young man, 20 going on 80 as I recall, was concerned about his sodium intake so he made the ramen but did not use the flavor packet enclosed. Hilarious debates raged about the proper utensil with which to consume the ramen… spoon or fork or spork? Ramen was gifted by many a “Secret Santa”. When I left the dorm, ramen noodles became the base for several affordable stir fry dishes I made in my first off campus apartment.
All in all, ramen played a quiet, ubiquitous, supporting role in my total college experience. I can’t imagine what it would have been like to battle a cold, get over a breakup, or cram for a final without ramen.
And so, I hoist my foam cup of steaming noodle goodness to you, RAMEN!
May individual serving portions of ramen nourish and warm the class of 2015 and beyond in the way that only ramen can.
If you have a ramen lover in your life, check out great gift ideas at: