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My 80 year old mother loved instant ramen for their taste, price, and convenience. But when her health deteriorated, I researched ways to reduce sodium and cholesterol in the foods she enjoyed. I was shocked to find that the first 2 ingredients in the seasoning packet of chicken-flavored instant ramen were salt and MSG, and that sodium listed in nutrition facts was for only half of the package. So instead of 800 mg. of sodium, the package actually contained 1,600 mg.! MSG research on the National Library of Medicine database indicated MSG links to human diabetes, and there were dozens of MSG links to animal obesity and destruction of brain cells as well. The following recipe has no MSG in it and contains about 2/3 LESS sodium than commercial ramen packages. While the flavor enhancer, MSG, and the large amounts of sodium are what make the packages of noodles taste so good, this version is a decent substitute that you won't be afraid to eat or serve people you care about. COOK's NOTE: Because 1 tsp. of instant chicken bouillon granules contains 790 mg. of sodium, the nutrition facts listed on this recipe should read at least 395 mg. per serving.
- 1 teaspoon instant chicken bouillon granules
- 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1⁄4 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1⁄8 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 pinch sugar
- 1 pinch celery seed
- 2 ounces dried vermicelli (1/8 of a 16 oz. package)
- 2 cups water
- Cook vermicelli in a pot of boiling, lightly salted water for about 9-10 minutes.
- While pasta is cooking, mix the seasonings together.
- Bring 2 cups water to a boil and mix in the seasonings, stirring until seasonings are dissolved.
- Drain pasta and add to seasoned water.
- Note: Turmeric gives the broth its yellow color and has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is used in curry seasoning mixtures and has little taste unless used in large quantities. It is recommended that we eat turmeric in small quantities.