Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sick-at-work day.

Um, so I may have made the tactical error of eating curry for lunch when my body is feeling less than 100%. I figured that since my stomach hasn’t been upset by whatever nasty thing has attacked my immune system, I was good to go. So, I brought leftover potato-chickpea-spinach curry and rice to work with me. I love this stuff. Nom nom nom.

My stomach does not love the curry. (Sad panda.) I thought feeling hungry again was a good sign, but it turns out that I’m only hungry for certain, very bland things. Like oatmeal. And bread. And ramen noodles. So while I sit here at my desk trying not to hurl, let me tell you about my love for ramen noodles. I think I need to make it clear that when I say “ramen noodles,” I mean this kind: Definitely not the fancy expensive kind. Certainly not the homemade kind.

When I was a wee sprite of a burnout, my mother called them Chinese noodles. I loved them something fierce and slurped them up with gusto. My favorite part was stirring in the ice cube she added to cool the noodles so I wouldn’t burn my mouth. After childhood, ramen noodles practically disappeared from my life until high school, when I rediscovered their deliciousness. Hell, it may have even been college. When I lived in Boulder, I ate them often because they were cheap. Like, 6 cents each cheap. Eventually, I realized that 1) most of the flavor packets weren’t vegan, and 2) eating that shit regularly wasn’t very good for me. So, I quit buying them. That’s as far as my willpower goes: if I don’t buy it, I can’t eat it. Problem solved.

Periodically I’d go through ramen noodle binges where I’d buy a bunch of packages, eat them over the course of a week or two, then go for several months without thinking of them. Somehow, during the year and a half that I’ve lived with Red, ramen noodles have become my go-to sick food. When I’m feeling gross, like I am now, but I need to eat, that’s all I want. Not the healthiest thing in the world, I admit, but I'm only semi-rational on my best day. All my Googling suggests that Top Ramen Oriental flavor is vegan, so that's what I eat. If it isn’t, I won't make a big deal out of it. Just tell me. But since, as far as I know, it is, here’s how I like to make it:

Boil water and add 2 noodle bricks. Cook for 3 or 4 minutes. Whatever, they’re ramen noodles. Drain. Add Earth Balance and a few sprinkles of one spice packet. Throw the other spice packet away. Enjoy on the couch while watching Law & Order: SVU and cuddling with the dog.

It’s cheap, it’s fast, and it gets the job done on a sick day. Now if only I had some here at work.


  1. Mmmmmmm... I love Top Ramen! Reminds me of my childhood. I used to add weird things to it like sliced hot dogs (pre-veg days, obviously). I haven't had it in years, because the last time I checked it had MSG in it :(

  2. I know, it's pretty bad for you! That's why I only buy it when I'm sick. You can get away with all sorts of things when you're sick. :)

  3. This is what I want to eat when I'm sick too. With a bit of lemon juice squeezed in.

    Unfortunately, they recently added lactose to the flavor packet. It was vegan up until a few months ago. I keep checking the packets at the grocery store, hoping they've changed back.

  4. The Nissin brand is the only vegan one I believe. Maruchen's Top Ramen Oriental is not.

    I love keeping those things around. I usually only use half a flavor packet
    (if I use it at all). I like adding tofu, frozen corn and peas, and green onions to mine. If I'm feeling saucy, I'll throw in some cilantro.

    Get well soon!