Instant Noodles: How Are They Made?

Instant noodles
Raw instant noodles? Tasty.

Instant, or readymade, noodles are a thing. We all know that. But do most of us Homo sapiens really know how they’re mass-produced to such a colossal extent? Let’s have a bloody good gander.

Instant Noodles

Momofuku Ando (1910-2007) created the things – his company was Nissin Foods and the brands Cup Noodles and Top Ramen came out of that.

Here in England, Golden Wonder took up the idea in 1977 and launched the Pot Noodle (check out our Pot Noodle sandwich for insights). It’s a glorious monument to gluttony and sloth.

As instant noodles are. Simply boil some water, add to instant noodles, wait a couple of minutes, and then stuff into your face with chopsticks, a fork, or your bare hands.

But what exactly are you stuffing into your mush? Creator Ando came up with the method of flash frying noodles. This involves:

  • Making the noodles (there are three key ingredients: flour, water, and salt).
  • Steaming them.
  • Adding seasoning,
  • Dehydrating them in oil heat.

Voila – instant noodles! But if you’re an instant noodle business, then you have to churn a vast amount of those bad boys out – and as fast as humanly possible.

The result is huge assembly lines now exist to churn out instant noodles in a perpetual stream of oodle-based chaos.

Global Demand

They first went on sale exactly from 25th August 1958. In 2012, 100 billion units were sold – that’s according to the World Instant Noodle Association.

It thoughtfully created the Global Demand for Instant Noodles chart. Behold!

Instant noodle global demand chart

Just to state the obvious here, but these things aren’t at all good for you. They’re junk food and boast a high level of carbohydrates and fat.

These things don’t pack a very high nutrient punch, either. We guess, at least, you’re getting some water into your system – so you won’t be as dehydrated as some instant noodles in a pack, eh?

With a big quota to meet, there can be issues with production.

Back in 2015, we covered this news story: Nestlé To Annihilate 400 Million Packs Of Instant Noodles. All those packs were contaminated with lead, you see. That was 27,000 tonnes of instant noodles… wasted.

But if you don’t mind being poisoned – and want to find beauty in the mass instant noodle making process – swoon over the above idea.

It’ll make you feel better the next time you boil a kettle to “cook” your dinner. You lazy bastard.

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