The art and science of cheese-making may have been shrouded in mystery because of its unclear history; some people claimed that gods brought cheese into being while various historians deemed its discovery to be purely coincidental.
As for me, I personally believe that it came from the cupboard of a culinary sorcerer because, as if by magic, cheese renders any dish with a degree of flavor that challenges the palate and sometimes, even our very own logic.
Take for example a cheese-based soup dish, which I initially reckoned pushes it a bit too far. It does exist though; case in point is Mitsuyado Sei-Men’s Cheese Tsukemen which has long piqued my curiosity.
As a cheese-lover, I just had to try it. I had to satisfy my taste buds, but most importantly, I had to find out if it indeed made sense.
Ready in several boils
The very base of ramen is a rich broth made by slowly boiling meat and bones for long hours or by simmering fish, and then simply seasoning it with either just salt or light soy. Wheat noodles provide the carbohydrates while slivers of meat supply the protein. Seaweed, leeks and vegetables add a depth of flavor and texture to the soup. Miso can also be added to render the broth with more flavor.
Tsukemen, on the other hand, is a type of ramen in which the noodles are dipped in a separate sauce and broth before eating it. If ramen is best consumed during cold days, Tsukemen is ideally eaten during hot days. As with the norm in Japan, an audible slurp is an applause to the chef.
The origin of ramen is unclear but literature describes it as a fairly modern dish, having been invented in the early 19th century.
Cold is Best
You may order the Cheese Tsukemen either cold or warm. I ordered mine cold, and the server agreed with me that it’s the best way to enjoy it. It arrived deconstructed — noodles, soup and cheese in separate bowls.
I waited no further and immediately poured the cheese over the noodles. After which, I added spoonfuls of the flavorful soup to the cheese-noodle mix.
My first bite confirmed how savory the dish is. It was filled with umami and each bite was addicting. The cold noodles brought out the various flavors of this filling ramen.I found it hard to stop eating it and quickly finished my delicious meal.
A bowl of this dish costs Php350 for the regular size and Php390 for a large bowl. Considering this is one of the best ramen dishes I have tried, I expected it to be costly but was pleasantly surprised because its price was at par with other popular Japanese restaurants around the metro.
We also tried the Chicken Black Pepper Don, a rice dish topped with chicken chunks and a tangy, mildly sweet sauce. It was also very savory, the chicken meat and sauce were best eaten with spoonfuls of rice to temper the richness of the sauce. It was also priced well, very easy-on-the-pocket at Php270 per bowl.
With the competitive pricing of Mitsuyado Sei-Men’s dishes, Japanese food enthusiasts may enjoy their favorite dishes whenever they crave for it, without breaking their budget.
Have a bite of the Cheese Tsukemen plus a host of other Japanese gastronomic favorites in Mitsuyado Sei-Men’s branches in Jupiter, Makati City; Blue Bay Walk, Pasay City, and Venice Grand Canal, Taguig City.