Marutama Ramen $12
A lot of people are going to be upset with this particular post. Those who don’t think much of Marutama will wonder why I even feature them. Those who love Marutama will be very upset with my ratings. This is one Ramen-ya which really polarizes our readers to those who love it and those who hate it, very much like what Durians do.
I have been to Marutama on an earlier occasion and decided that I would not blog them because I came away wondering why so many people would line up for what seems to me to be a glorified bowl of chicken flavoured Maggi Mee? But perhaps that just shows that people just have different preferences when it comes to Ramen. For me, when I eat Ramen, it needs to be something that I can’t get from the hawker centre or make at home. Why else would I want to pay $12 for something I can buy for $3? That is why I tend to go for the Tonkotsu broth, because having pork bones on a rolling boil for 15 hours is not something you would do at home and no hawkers are doing it. On another occasion, we tried the new Keisuke Tokyo at Parco Marina Bay which serves a prawn based soup. I went away wondering why I should pay so much for a bowl of prawn noodle soup when you can get a much better tasting prawn mee for as low as $3 at Hoe Nam or if you want to spend a bit more, a bowl of Wah Kee prawn noodle is anytime a better way to spend your money and calories.
At my home, we have a constant supply of chicken broth because it is now our weekly habit to buy two whole chickens (antibiotic free), portion out the thighs, the breast and the wing and use the rest to make stock which we would use for cooking soup and frying veggies. Its actually quite easy to do. Just put the whatever chicken parts you have into a pot, add onions, ginger and some root vegetable like radish or carrots to add sweetness and boil for an hour.
When I eat Marutama Ramen, I can imagine heating up some of this stock and throw in a handful of fresh egg noodles which you can buy from the local supermarket. I think that is my problem. Why pay $12 when it isn’t much better than what I can easily have at home? And the point is, I don’t even make this at home that often because I don’t think much of it!
In case you want to learn how to really eat a bowl of ramen, you should watch this clip from the 1985 Japanese Comedy, Tampopo, where a very young Ken Watanabe learns the skill from a Ramen master! Have a good laugh and the start of a very good weekend!