Food Review

Korean Hwa Ramyun is Ram’yum

My title sounds like those obnoxious Instagrammers with cutesy description/titles which makes me want to pour the spice packet into my eye.

With a product by Paldo like Hwa Ramyun, that’ll actually sting.

Photo Description: the product packaging is a square package. The shiny packaging is red and black with yellow highlights. The brand Paldo, and the text "ramyun" and "hot & spicy epice" is written on the package, along with a Chinese and Korean characters."
If you can’t handle spicy, here’s a chance to put that TP to use for your fiery bunghole.

I thought having been to Korea and having Korean friends, that I would somehow know a lot more about this product, but I don’t.

I never knew the brand name, their product line up, or anything else about the company, so here is everything you need to know because if you were like me, you purchased the product solely on recognizing the product by its packaging design.

  • COMPANY: Paldo
  • WHO IS PALDO (in their words): “Paldo is the global food company of love and trust. As a leading brand made ​​by Korea Yakult, Paldo has grown with the love of our customers. To get closer to our customers, the global food company of love and confidence started a new chapter as “Paldo”.
  • FOUNDED: 1983 (the parent company was established in 1969).
  • HEADQUARTERS: 577 Gangnam-daero, Seocho-gu, Seoul, Korea.
  • PRODUCT LINEUP: 29 products that range from “Mr Kim Chi, Hot & Spicy Noodles, Soupless Noodles, Delicatessen Noodles, Not Spicy Noodles, to Korean Noodles.”
  • PRODUCT NAME: Hwa Ramyun
  • PRODUCT DESCRIPTION: “hot & spicy flavor” (damn, I thought Japanese companies sucked, but Korean companies are no better).
  • OTHER NOTES: their website sucks when it comes to product information, and they give box dimensions, “CBM?”, loadable quantity, to cooking instructions.

You Can’t Hate on This Product

From the packaging all the way down to the price ($1.10 to $2.77 each), there is just too much here to like although I initially thought the same about my now ex.

Photo Description: a square block of wavy noodles.
These noodles are wavy just like all too many ajumma’s.

I need to go out and buy a square saucepan.

Photo Description: one of the packets which includes the vegetables, but the text has "vegetable soup base" written on it.
Great for a vegetable potpourri.

The Hwa Ramyun Vegetables and Those Funky Round Slices

I don’t know if it’s a chemical or if it’s just a good quality product, but even the veggies smell good when you open the package. Not only that, but they are also substantial, and they aren’t tiny specks like competing products.

Photo Description: my bowl with the dried vegetable and some weird round looking "sausages" along with what looks like shiitake mushrooms.
The ingredients list doesn’t have any ingredient that seems to describe those round things (please have it not be sliced animal penis).

Les Ingrédients du Douchebag

The douchiest part of this product is that they have their packaging in English and French. I mean, I could be wrong, and maybe French Canadians or France is one of their largest markets, but if you have ever watched a K-drama, I associate the use of French by Koreans to being douchey. If only it had been in Spanish/Espanol, I would have had some respect, although that is not in line with their motivations.

Photo Description: the spice packet.
*RESPECT* to Paldo because this company is not playing dumb by claiming “No Added MSG” bullshit.

Not sure if I believe their ingredients list because it sounds all too wholesome because it is not a long list of synthesized ingredients like the ingredients list of a Nissin package which dances around the fact that they use flavor enhancers.

With Paldo, they flat out claim that they unapologetically use MSG, which you got to love.

Photo Description: the spice packet and vegetable packet all combined and in my bowl.
Only 2 packets required and needed.

Unlike other brands, this one has you dump the seasoning packet and veggies directly into the saucepan as you cook the noodles.

Photo Description: everything all put together in the bowl.
It’s either Hwa or Shin ramyun by Nongshim which is the best-selling brand in South Korea.

Ramyun/Ramyeon Is Korean, Yet Throughout the Paldo Website, They Refer To It as “Ramen” (Japanese). Well, It’s Not

Dumbasses think Asia is like Africa, one giant homogenous continent, but if you’re here reading this, you know differently.

Unfortunately products like Hwa are not ramen, “ramen” is a noodle type that requires sodium carbonate and potassium carbonate (kansui). Hwa noodles are just wheat flour, modified starch, palm oil, and gluten.

Since this is a Korean product, Koreans are no stranger to spice which is why after a couple days in Korea, I ended up eating at Red Robin because there’s only so much gochujang (Korean chili paste) I want to eat.

It is not because I do not like spice, because I like spicy, but everything I was eating had it. Foods like budae jjigae, tteokbokki, cheese buldak, to a ton of other dishes all have the prominent one-note taste of gochujang which also includes the flavor profile of Hwa ramyun.

Photo Description: check out those noodles.
Not a whole lot of savory going on here, but it’s got more spice than most products hyping to be “hot and spicy.”

Wet Noodles

Glossing over the noodles is like glossing over the bun of a burger, and these noodles are a solid standout. Surprisingly for an instant noodle they have a good body to them and are silky and slurpable (they are also one of my favorite instant noodles).

Photo Description: I just had to add some kimchi to my Paldo Hwa ramyun because I just thought it was perfectly fitting to do so.
What is Korean food without kimchi.

In Korea, you will find kimchi everywhere, and if you have it, use it. If you don’t have it, go out and get it because it’s the perfect topping to this ramyun (keep in mind I’m no expert on ramyun, and I’m sure Koreans might have some better tips).

Ramyun Hacks to Take it Up a Notch

In the spirit of budae jjigae, I added some sliced lunch meats/cold cuts which were a slice or two of ham and a slice of pepper jack cheese which turned out great, but I suspect Spam to American cheese would go great too. 

Although if you want to try and add Japanese ramen toppings to a Korean ramyun, you can always try these ramen toppings.

Conclusion on What I think of Paldo Hwa Ramyun

I prefer savory flavors over spicy although sometimes spicy is good. If that is also what you are looking for, look no further because this product is one of the best values out there. Just do not get it in your eye unless you are being cutesy, then go right ahead and pull a Steve-O.

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