These are noodle soups or dry noodle dishes that come out of a packet in dehydrated form and can be converted into 'edible' form by 3 minutes of cooking in hot water. They are also called instant noodles. Sometimes, they can be seen disguised in a cup (Pot noodles). IMHO, Asian ones are usually far superior to western ones. If you've bought some, you might be wondering how to make edible 3 minute noodles.

Here's a simple recipe that I often use when I'm alone at home and very hungry. I'll try my best to list out the ingredients used, but some of them may be referred to by different names where you live.


  • 1 packet of 3 minute noodles (my preferred brand is Maggi Mee, but I'm unsure if that's available abroad)
  • 200g minced beef (any type will do)
  • Some form of vegetable (Chinese cai xin perhaps)
  • Minced garlic (4-5 cloves)
  • Ground white pepper
  • Chicken stock
  • Dark soy sauce (sometimes referred to as black sauce, having an opaque jet-black colour and with a richer, less salty taste as compared to light sauce)
  • Vegetarian oyster sauce (made from mushrooms)
  • Preparation

    Place the minced beef in a bowl. Add pepper, and mix. Add dark soy sauce and oyster sauce liberally, and mix till the beef turns dark brown. While adding the sauce, try to imagine what the beef will taste like with the amount of sauce you are adding. For this dish, the beef should be real salty, so be free to add a lot of sauce if you so wish.

    Slice the vegetables in any way you desire.


    Get a pot, fill it about 3/4 full with water, and set it aside to boil. Once it begins to boil, add in half a teaspoon of chicken stock, and stir till it dissolves. Add in the vegetables.

    Warm up a frying pan (or a wok, if you prefer), and add a little bit of oil. Throw in the garlic, and stir fry till it begins to turn golden. Add in the beef, and stir fry.

    While you fry the beef, check on the pot. If it is now boiling (it should have stopped when you added the vegetables), add in the noodles. Again, stir to make sure they spread out.

    The beef is about ready when it is a nice brown colour and smells really delicious. Lower the flame and let the minced beef simmer, while you wait for the noodles to cook.

    The noodles should begin to look like they have grown slightly thicker. Once this happens, pour the contents of the frying pan (beef and garlic, oil optional) into the pot and mix. Leave it to cook for just a little while and then serve.


    Hmm. That sounds like quite a bit of work, but really, the only hard part is keeping an eye on the noodles while you continue frying the beef. And speaking of frying, remember that stir frying means you constantly move the contents of the pan here and there. The beef will not be evenly cooked otherwise.

    The end result, btw, is absolutely delicious. The noodles and the vegetables are devoid of anything but their natural flavour, while the beef is chock-full of rich taste (since you made it extra-salty during preparation). Some of the sauce from the beef mixes with the clear soup, giving it an interesting flavour. Definitely worth the effort spent.

    Oh man. Never node about food when you're hungry. *rumble*

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