Following the roaring success of “mystery meat,” Cup Noodle turns its vague focus o the sea.

Nissin’s Cup Noodle instant ramen comes in a lot of different varieties, and one of the most popular is Seafood Noodle, which was first introduced in 1984. That’s not to say that Nissin has just been resting on its laurels for the past 30-plus years, though, as it periodically revises the recipe to keep up with current tastes.

This week Seafood Cup Noodle got is latest update, its first in five years, and Nissin is proud of the new ingredient it’s added: “almost squid!”

In describing the decision, Nissin draws parallels to the “mystery meat” used in other Cup Noodle flavors, which has so many fans that it’s led to the creation of Rare Species Mystery Meat Cup Noodles and Mystery Meat Rice Bowls. So Nissin figures if customers like one vaguely defined creature in their cup, why not another with an aquatic theme?

However, the almost squid isn’t being used as a replacement for actual squid, but as an accompaniment to it. The new Seafood Cup Noodle still contains two kinds of actual squid, just like it did before, along with egg, cabbage, and green onion, plus a fish stock-enhanced pork broth.

But while it can be coy in its advertising language, Nissin of course does have to disclose exactly what’s in its ramen for health certification purposes, and you’ll be happy to know that almost squid isn’t made out of krakens, Metal Slug-style aliens, or mermaids who had their wish to be part of our world granted in the most cruelly ironic way possible. Instead, Nissin’s almost squid is a kind of kamaboko (Japanese fish cake) with a texture, flavor, and appearance similar to a calamari chunk.

With kamaboko being a popular traditional food in Japan for generations, the almost squid Seafood Cup Noodle, which went on sale this week for 193 yen (US$1.85) is sure to be a big hit. Oh, and if you want the secret of Cup Noodle’s mystery meat spoiled for you too, we’ve got the truth right here.

Source: Nissin via IT Media
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