Three Ways to Take Ramen to the Next Level

Do you enjoy a nice, delicious bowl of hot ramen every now and then? Although you may not care to admit it due to it's reputation, it actually really is quite tasty (I'm partial to the beef flavor myself).

So how do you take the rather bland noodles and broth and take them to culinary wonderland? I've got three little tips that will make your beloved little noodle dish even more delicious.

1. Fresh, green vegetables. This is really simple, but can do so much for your ramen. If you only follow this one suggestion, you're still going to enjoy your ramen as much, if not more than if you follow all three suggestions. When adding your green vegetables, stick to things like green onion, cilantro, peas, or even thinly cut green bell pepper. Not only will these veggies taste awesome in the broth with the noodles, they'll make the dish even more appetizing because of their bright, inviting color.

2. Aromatic juices. Going along with the freshness theme, squeezing just the right amount of fresh juice into your bowl will alter the aroma and make it more complex. A couple drops of fresh citrus (lime, lemon) will really kick up the scent and the flavor, especially if you've opted in to adding cilantro. Another great juice to add is ginger. Getting the juice out of ginger may be a bit of a challenge, but all you need to do is grate some up and give it a hearty squeeze.

3. Cheese. This may seem like an odd suggestion and not entirely healthy, but it's delicious. Good choices are cheddar, mozzarella, muenster, Havarti, or Swiss. Basically you want a good melting cheese that will get nice and gooey in the hot broth. I like to put the cheese in the bowl first and then pour the broth and noodles over it and giving it a nice five minute rest. When you start eating the ramen, gently stir from the bottom up to enjoy the rich flavor combination of cheese and salty broth. Also, you should not have to add much cheese, so if you're worried about the added calories only add about a tablespoon of shredded cheese.

So that's it, three simple things you can add to your next bowl of ramen to really make it memorable and satisfying. A hot bowl of soup is always a nice way to spend a chilly evening and relax while your everyday stresses melt away into the steam broth. Oh, one more tip. Cracking an egg into the ramen while it's still piping hot is another great way to add even more flavor dimension and nutrition.