Okay…. before you log on to your email accounts to write some witty remarks on how I’ve gone all Martha Stewart, let me explain (but bring it on anyway). This blog is not only meant to prepare you for surviving an unexpected natural or man-made disaster but also unexpected or sudden life changes. The loss of a job, a divorce or simply going away to school and living on a shoe-string budget are some reasons one may wish to look hard at making affordable meals that are quick, easy, nutritious, cheap and can be modified for taste. 

Ramen noodles have been the staple of college dorms for years. One problem with just preparing ramen noodles as recommended on the package is that you can get pretty sick of the taste rather quickly.  But, they are cheap (about 25 cents a pack) and easy to make. Another problem is that if you prepare one block of a typical Ramen Noddle soup with the accompanying seasoning packet (a 2 serving size believe it or not), you will get 380 calories, 14 grams of fat, 1600 milligrams of sodium (66% of your daily recommended intake!), 52 grams of carbohydrates (huh, pretty low), less than 1 gram of dietary fiber and 10 grams of protein.

I came across this alternative while working at the police academy in NYC.  The academy is located on the island of Manhattan in NYC.  Tons of great food around it, but mostly very expensive haute cuisine.  One day I stopped in a new Chinese bakery that opened and they had fried ramen noodles on the menu for $5.00.  SCORE!  That is a cheap meal in NYC!  It was a pretty big portion, had egg and onions in it and it tasted like a noodle version of fried rice. Yum.  I asked the proprietor for the recipe, but he politely refused.  I decided I would try to recreate it.  After many months, and many bowls of mushed noodles, I realized that the technique of cooking it was as important as the ingredients.

My version eliminates the high sodium packet that is enclosed with the ramen noodle package in favor of better, more nutritional ingredients.  This is an EASY recipe and takes about 5 minutes to prepare.  Below is the basic recipe…. you can add as many other ingredients as you wish to change it up and make it your own. This will be more than enough for one person.  The entire cost of this meal is about $1.00 (yes, one dollar!)

Ingredients:

  • One package of Ramen noodles (block type)
  • One tablespoon of vegetable oil (or canola or olive)
  • One egg
  • Quarter of a small onion (or any other veg. in that family) finely chopped
  • Half a tablespoon of low sodium soy sauce (can use regular but sodium will go up)

In a pot, boil ramen noodles as directed.  Throw out flavor packet. I suggest under-cooking it a bit, so if says boil for three minutes, boil for about 2 minutes.  Drain noodles in a colander.  Then rinse noodles under cold water until noodles are cool (this was the secret!!).  If not, the noodles will still cook from that point on and you will have a mass of mush. Drain water from the noodles in the colander.  Put oil in pan over medium heat.  A non-stick pan is recommended but not necessary. Beat eggs in a small bowl and add egg to pan and scramble. Add onions (and other ingredients you choose) in pan.  Saute for about 2 minutes until egg and other ingredients are cooked.  Put cold noodles in pan and pour in soy sauce.  Saute for about a minute.  Then enjoy!

Basic ramen recipe

Let me know if you try the recipe and any variations you come with.  I’m going to start a new category for recipes.  The criteria are that the recipe must be quick, easy, cheap and be at least somewhat nutritious. Post a recipe here and the world will know you are an Urban Survivalist!

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Comments
  1. InnerWarriorMA says:

    Love it man! Have cooked something similar myself on many occasions. Nothing like simple, cheap, and it helps when it tastes pretty good as well!

  2. OGAS says:

    What happened, man? You used to be cool. I go to your website to learn how to kick ASS, how make a shiv out of a bar of soap and a working gun out of taster parts–not to put on a sundress and an apron.

    Totally kidding:-) I love this angle on Urban Survival. Very helpful, more, please.

    • Bruce says:

      Well, if in the apocalyptic 2012 future, when sundress/apron wearing zombies take over our planet, you are going to kiss my a$$ and thank me for this post! 🙂

      I hope that this post illustrates the point that this is a “practical” guide to urban survival. There are a lot of preppers out there and I give them a LOT of credit for what they do. If there is an apocalypse, I will be banging on their concrete reinforced mobile homes for sure. Until then, surviving urban life is hard enough. Now, where is your darn recipe!!

  3. morph4me says:

    When the apocalypse happens there will be plenty of bodies around and libraries will be open, so while you’re eating ramen noodles and banging on concrete reinforced mobile homes. I’ll just get myself a copy of the cannibals cookbook and feast until my heart’s content

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