Tag Archives: Ando Momofuku

Birthday of two famous Japanese

5 Mar

Today, 2015 March 5th, is the birthday of two famous Japanese people.
They’re famous in Japan, at least. Are they known in your country too?

First of all, the world’s oldest person, 大川ミサヲ (Misao OKAWA), was born on 1898 March 5th in Osaka, Japan. She is celebrating her 117th birthday today with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren!

Next, also from Osaka (but wasn’t born there)…today also would have been the birthday of 安藤百福 (Momofuku ANDO).
He is the man who invented instant Cup Noodle!

「カップヌードル」

He was born Taiwan on 1910 March 5th. At that time, Taiwan was a Japanese territory.

At the age of 22, he moved to Osaka, Japan and eventually became a naturalized Japanese citizen.
When he became a Japanese citizen, he changed his name to Momofuku Ando.
“Ando” is a common Japanese family name…but “Momofuku” is an unusual name in Japan. But his first name was changed to Momofuku when he became Japanese because it is an uncommon pronunciation in Japanese of his Chinese first name (pronounced “Baifu” in Chinese). It is written 「百福」 and literally means “One hundred fortunes“.

The logo of Google’s Japanese homepage today is of Momofuku ANDO.

インスタントラーメンの父

7 Mar

Do you know 「安藤百福」 (Momofuku Ando)?

He was the inventor of instant ramen.

He was born in Taiwan on 1910 March 5. In the 1940’s, he moved to Osaka, Japan and became a naturalized Japanese citizen.
Soon after, he started his own company called 「日清食品株式会社」 (Nisshin Food Corp.) and he made 「チキンラーメン」 (“Chicken Ramen”).
He sold these packages of instant noodles for ¥35 each.
They’re still popular in Japan today…the price nowadays is only about ¥60 (about US$0.75) for a package.

Chicken Ramen

In the early 1970’s, Momofuku Ando invented 「カップヌードル」 (“Cup Noodle“) which became a worldwide success.
I think “Cup Noodle” is called “Cup Noodles” (plural) outside Japan. Is that what they’re called in your country?

A package of "Cup Noodle" made for outside Japan is called "Cup Noodles".

Mr. Momofuku Ando died on 2007 January 5. Only three years ago, and only two months shy of his 97th birthday.

Well, the day before yesterday (2010 March 5), would have been Momofuku Ando’s 100th birthday…which is all the more special if you know that his interesting first name is written as 「百福」. The characters that spell his first name “Momofuku” translate literally to “One hundred good fortunes”.

So to commemorate the 100th anniversary of their founder’s birth, Nisshin Foods is having a few different campaigns.

First of all, the original instant noodle, 「チキンラーメン」 (“Chicken Ramen“), is being sold in a retro package that looks like the original package…and it’s being sold at the original price for a limited time: only ¥35 each.

Also, a package of original flavor 「カップヌードル」 (Cup Noodle) is now available for only ¥100 each.

And Nisshin is also selling a new product in honor of Momofuku Ando’s 100th birthday…packages of 「百福」 (Momofuku) noodles (either “Chicken salt broth Ramen” or “Duck broth Soba”) for ¥170.
These are in large packages because each noodle is 100 cm long!

And lastly, if you go to the 「ららぽーと豊洲」 (“Toyosu Lalaport” shopping mall) in Tokyo from 2010 March 27 – April 4 between 10:00AM – 6:00PM, you can see a special event for the 100th anniversary of Momofuku Ando’s birth.

They’ll have an exhibit that explains the history of Nissin Foods, instant ramen, and Mr. Ando.
They will also 「わたしのカップヌードル」 (Custom Cup Noodle) in which you can add whatever flavors you choose to your instant ramen for ¥300,
As well as other displays, shows and foods to try…including “Space Ramen”, which is the special package of instant ramen that Nisshin Foods made for astronauts to bring into space with them.

Have you ever tried 「カップヌードル」 (Cup Noodle)? Do you like it?
I like instant ramen. It’s good. But “real” ramen from a ramen restaurant in much better!
Have you ever tried Japanese ramen at a restaurant? I recommend 「坦々麺」 (“Tan-tan-men”)…it’s a spicy flavor of ramen. I like it alot. Have you ever tried it? Do you like spicy food?