Be thee warned, the Millennial Generation is more prepared then Gen X. Case in point, Chili Jr. (age 13) and Pre (a spry 11) have begun preparing for college. Prima facie, this would be outstanding, as I waited to prepare for college until well after my third semester at the University. Their “secretive” college prep came to light one afternoon when I found them monkeying around with the microwave. Were they squirreling away some money for books, or studying physics a little harder, or maybe performing some (strange) resume-building volunteerism? Nope. They are preparing for post-secondary education by acclimating their palates to the taste of ramen.
2 packages (3 oz each) ramen noodles (you won’t be using the flavor pack)
½ lb ground beef
1 C canned or cooked pinto beans, drained
2 T chili powder
1 t garlic powder
1 t hot sauce
1 ½ C vegetable juice
½ C diced sweet red pepper
½ C diced white onion
- Set ramen in a pot of boiling water, turn off heat, cover and let soak for 10 minutes then drain.
- Brown ground beef and drain the fat.
- To the beef, add pintos, chili powder, garlic powder, hot sauce, and vegetable juice.
- Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add softened noodles and stir, simmering for 5 minutes.
- Add onions and peppers.
- Serve with garlic bread.
Prepared in the manner in which I had, the noodles were not al dente’, they were al mushe’. No problem, the squishiness of the noodles worked quite well for this dish. If you prefer firmer noodles, soak them for a shorter period of time. The Involuntary Taste Panel loved this dish. Words bandied about included: “awesome, very good, excellent, and (the phrase) let’s have seconds.” Chili Jr. pointed out that the dish could have used a bit more seasoning. Another tablespoon of chili powder or one of the flavor packets (we had used “beef” ramen) would have served nicely. To test this, I took the small amount of remaining chili and sprinkled onto it a portion of the “beef flavor” packet. Yum- salty, beefy, goodness.
On a personal note, I’m glad the boys are looking toward their future. Mrs. Chili365 and I want the kids to have some of the opportunities we did not. To this point, we had discussed trying to pay off the house early so that we could help with student loans and semesters overseas, et cetera. On the hand, maybe the best we can give them is more ramen chili recipes.