So you thought durian ramen was atrocious? A ramen shop called “Ramen Boy” in Taipei is raising more than a few eyebrows online with its new giant isopod (Bathynomus giganteus) ramen.
We’re not sure about you, but we’re more than happy with ramen that’s garnished simply with good ol’ char shu and nori. However, that classic combination’s clearly not good enough for some people because after shocking purists with a durian topping in Malaysia, this Taiwanese joint is going a step further. Actually, make that a lot of steps further.
Available at the Liaoning Street Night Market, the owner of the ramen shop describes it as his “dream” ingredient, noting that the hideous, alien-like, 160-million-year-old arthropod species tastes similar to lobster and crab. Giant isopods live in deep cold parts of the sea and are carnivorous scavengers that feed on remains that sink to the floor of the ocean.
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As shocking as the photos appear, the chef says that the overall taste is fresh and that the giant isopod’s glands are quite sweet. Caught near Dongsha Island, the giant isopod is made with a thick Yusuke chicken bouillon soup where the meaty portions are boiled with katsuobushi and other seafood. The shell itself is only for decoration. For those curious as to how it is prepared and served, the owner has uploaded plenty of detailed images to both his Facebook and Instagram account detailing the process.
Priced at 1,480 NTD (approx. SGD 65), brave ramen lovers can head over to Taipei now to try the limited-time giant isopod ramen from Ramen Boy.