Chicago - Jul. 12, 2022
Music TV Politics Sports Books People Places & Things
Beachwood PP&T
Our monthly PP&T archive.
Rhymes for the Times.
Beachwood Bookmarks
So You've Decided To Be Evil
Vintage Beer Signs
Easy Bar Tricks
Best of Craigslist
Wacky Packages
Taquitos Snack Food Reviews
How Products Are Made
Everyday Mysteries
Chicago Zombie
Texts From Last Night
Fuck My Life
Awkward Family Photos
Ultra Local Geography
Best Pinball Machine Ever
Land of Sky Beer Waters
Calumet 412
Chicago Patterns
Vince Michael's Time Tells
Renegades of Funk Chicago
History vs. Hollywood

Ramen Review #2: Dr. McDougall's Baked Not Fried

The first day I declined lunch in my corporate cafeteria my friends saw the ramen on my desk and laughed. They laughed at it the second day. After two weeks, they began giving me impromptu health lectures at the fax machine. When I told them how the market was flooded these days with low sodium, low-fat healthy ramen, the lectures stopped. A week later I developed a debilitating three-day headache and friends asked if I was actually eating any of that low sodium, low-fat healthy ramen. Of course, I was not. The next day I decided to try one of those healthy ramen meals, and I chose Dr. McDougall's baked not fried ramen. Because as far as Asian cuisine is concerned, with a name like McDougall's, it has to be good.

ramen_th.jpgThe artwork on the front of the container was grim and unappealing. Three children played soccer in front of an empty pagoda on a lawn surrounded by large, jagged rocks. The scene looked like a screen capture from Teen Second Life®. Large marketing slogans like, "0 Trans Fats", "Heart Healthy", "Bigger Size", "New Packet Inside", "Right Foods", "Fresh Flavor", and "Natural Delicious Wellness" threatened to crush the avatar teens and their active, healthy lifestyles. "Ignorance is Strength", "Arbeit Macht Frei" and "Dilute! Dilute! OK!" were left off the container only because it was not large enough to include them.

I added hot water and waited. The broth was clear but contained several tiny green and brown clots. Stirring the broth made no difference. The clots didn't sink or float. They hung in suspension like cottage cheese in a Jell-O salad. The broth tasted like powder even though it was clearly a sort of gluey liquid. It was the driest liquid I had ever tasted. Worst of all, it smelled like an old health food store - the kind run by a graying hippie with sunken eyes, a 16-inch waist, and no muscle definition. It smelled like brewers' yeast, carob, and some sort of flour made from beans.

Also in suspension were bits of corn, carrots, green beans, and spinach. They all tasted like they were supposed to, but the green beans didn't re-hydrate very well. The spinach taste was the most prominent. After three minutes the noodles absorbed all the broth and coagulated into a single glob of cold starch I could barely finish eating.

Whether or not this product contains MSG is debatable. Although MSG is not a listed ingredient, yeast extract is. Yeast extract contains MSG, and some have argued that including yeast extract on a product label is a way for manufacturers to add MSG to the food without having to list MSG as an ingredient. Truth in labeling activists have been discussing this issue for years. At any rate, I couldn't decide if yeast extract and turmeric tasted more like "Fresh Flavor", or "Natural Delicious Wellness".

Dr. McDougall's ramen is a healthy vegan soup but it's repulsive and expensive. It's the kind of thing Carrie Bradshaw might eat if she were 22, real, and worked out at LPAC. Thanks, I'll take the headache.


Taste/noodle raw: Bland. The tiny slivers are too small to snack on.
Taste/noodle cooked: Mushy and slightly slimy.
Taste/Broth: Salt, yeast, sand, and spinach flavors.
Odor: An old health food store.
Hydrogenated oils: No.
MSG: No (Yeast Extract).
Calories per serving: 100
Servings per package: 2
Sodium per serving: 320mg
Price: $2.19
Packets: 1
Overall Ramen Rating: 4 out of 10


- Ramen Review #1: Tradition Noodle Soup Oriental Style.


Posted on July 17, 2007

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
TV - Vizio's Best Product Is You.
POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


Search The Beachwood Reporter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Follow BeachwoodReport on Twitter

Beachwood Radio!