homemade ramen burger

Posted on Mar. 3, 2011 by geoffropuff

i thought i had written a blog post about the ramen burger i ate at an ikebukuro matsuri, but after looking through the archives, i guess i didn’t.  instead, i had written a blurb and submitted it to the culinary ambassador corps section of the serious eats blog.  while it hasn’t been published, here’s what it would look like if it HAD been posted:

ikebukuro ramen burger stand

ikebukuro matsuri ramen burger

me eating ikebukuro ramen burger

half-eaten ikebukuro ramen burger

Ramen Burger (Sandwich)

Usually enjoyed in a big bowl while sitting at a table or counter, ramen is not known as a food for people on the go.  The ramen burger looks to change all that, combining all the ingredients that make ramen so tasty into handheld form.  I found this specimen of gourmet goodness at a summer matsuri (festival) right outside Ikebukuro, Tokyo.

The name ‘ramen burger’ is a bit misleading because there is no actual hamburger patty, only a slice of chashu pork.  Many sandwiches are mislabeled as burgers in Japan but in actuality, it should be called a ramen sandwich.

To start off, this sandwich doesn’t have a traditional bun, instead using ramen noodle discs fried into the shape of a bun.  The noodles aren’t fried until they’re crunchy but rather just long enough so they could keep their shape.

In between the noodle buns were all the usual ingredients you might find in a bowl of ramen: chashu (roast pork), naruto (fish cake), negi (scallions), and menma (marinated bamboo shoots).

After it’s assembled, you have a choice of which type of ramen soup flavor you’d like in your sandwich: shoyu (soy sauce), shio (salt), miso (soybean paste), and tonkotsu (pork bone).  Don’t worry about it being super messy, the soup base was thickened significantly to make for a nice condiment.  Finally, if it was to your liking, you could add some togarashi (Japanese assorted chili pepper powder) to spice up your sandwich.

So far, the ramen burger hasn’t really caught on besides being sold by street vendors at local festivals.  However, with the worldwide explosion in popularity of ramen, I’m hoping that you’ll soon see the ramen burger at a restaurant near you.

so why the post?  the ramen burger was so tasty that i just had to try and make one at home.  first, i bought an already prepared bowl of and separated it into parts:

homemade ramen burger filling

moyashi (bean sprouts), chashu (pork), green onions, and menma (marinated bamboo).

homemade ramen burger sauce

prepared ramen usually has semi-solid sauce that becomes the soup when heated up. it actually worked perfectly for flavoring a ramen burger.

then i took the noodles and fried them in pancake shapers, using a metal ladle to flatten them out into nice “buns.”

homemade ramen burger buns

the bowl of ramen had enough noodles to make 2 burgers worth of buns.

homemade ramen burger finished buns

you can stop cooking them when the noodles are chewy/slightly crispy.

once the buns are finished, all you have to do is put the ingredients inside and scarf.

homemade ramen burger almost finished

as with any burger/sandwich/relationship, put the good stuff in between the buns. =)

homemade ramen burger success

just make sure you eat it before the soup base heats up, liquefies, and squirts all over your face. =)

innuendo aside, the ramen burger is very good.  the only thing i would suggest is that you make them in bulk to make the effort worth it.  bon apetit or whatever.


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