Moroheiya Green Noodles

The last time I visited my favorite Ann Arbor Japanese grocery a display of pretty green and white packages of noodles caught my attention. The packages showed colorful vegetables and curly green noodles. “Deliciously Chewy!” proclaimed the top line, and near the bottom, “Ready in 2-3 minutes.” The noodles are made with leaves of the moroheiya plant, making them a “great source of fibers & vitamin A.” Unlike most instant noodles, these are not fried nor do they have added MSG.

Mr. Tess and Little Tess were home for lunch, and hungry. Usually lunch is a matter of foraging in the fridge, pantry, and breadbox but I was curious about these noodles. I added a lovely tomato, a half package of soft tofu, wakame, and sliced green onions to the soup. Verdict: I would never crave these noodles, though the others really enjoyed them. We all found the shiitake broth salty so I’d suggest not adding the whole packet. We didn’t use the soy sauce either. Overall, these are a nice pantry staple for lunch or a snack.

Read more about these green noodles on the company website.
From a note on the package: Mr. Sho Oga was a typical employee working for a company in Japan which produced health supplements. One day he had an inspiration to create a healthy food that was not only nutritious but enjoyable tasty and easy to prepare. His goal was to find a simple and effortless way for people of all ages to eat healthy. This lead to the wonderful creation of the Moroheiya noodles.

Morohelya is a highly nutritious vegetable that was prized by the Egyptians for its health and beauty benefits.

moroheiya wikipedia photographer J.M.Garg

Moroheiya also known as mulukhiya or mallow leaf (Corchuros in Lat.)
Corchorus is a genus of about 40-100 species of flowering plants in the family Malvaceae, native to tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world. Different common names are used in different contexts, with jute applying to the fiber produced from the plant, and mallow-leaves for the leaves used as a vegetable.
The plants are tall, usually annual herbs, reaching a height of 2-4 m, unbranched or with only a few side branches. The leaves are alternate, simple, lanceolate, 5-15 cm long, with an acuminate tip and a finely serrated or lobed margin. The flowers are small (2-3 cm diameter) and yellow, with five petals; the fruit is a many-seeded capsule. It thrives almost anywhere, and can be grown year-round.

14 thoughts on “Moroheiya Green Noodles

  1. Where is this store in AA? I only know of Noble Fish in the SE Michigan area… I’m always looking for new Japanese markets.

    • It’s Tsai Grocery:
      3115 Oak Valley Dr
      Ann Arbor, MI 48103

      There are many Asian markets in Ann Arbor, mostly Korean. But they carry a nice selection of Japanese foods.

      Surprisingly Hiller’s in Arborland has a broad selection of Japanese foods. They have a specific buyer for their Japanese foods for the chain:

      Every Saturday, Kyoko leads cooking classes at the Hiller’s 14 Mile and Haggerty store – the location of Hiller’s largest Japanese foods selection. That’s where you’ll find 800 authentic Japanese items – all the makings for sushi to pork buns, sashimi-grade fish and 25 different Japanese pickles, plus varieties of miso, sake, shochu and oolong tea.

  2. I’m not familiar with these types of green noodles. But I don’t know that much about Japanese food ingredients.

    However I love green tea noodles. To me, they add an elegant, veggie flavour to a dish.

    • These are not traditional Japanese noodles–A fine example of Japanese innovation and re-inventing. They are instant noodles, but unlike instant ramen they have not been fried so they are low in fat.

      I love the green tea soba too!

  3. I love company for lunch. Glad you had your two home!
    I think I spy the chemex in one picture. I’m not sure how they work but they look so elegant. I started to watch Rosemary’s baby last night – it went too late so I’ve taped the rest- I noticed Mia Farrow poured the morning coffee from a chemex in the beautiful apartment.
    Is your hot weather passed? We had a wonderfully fine day today. Spring in the air and in the step. Soon your ginkgo will be golden.

    • We got a Chemex as a wedding gift—they were popular back then (I haven’t seen Rosemary’s Baby in ages!). It’s just a drip method, the grounds in a paper filter, add water from a kettle, and voila: coffee. We had that pot for about 30 years until Little Tess dropped it when she visited a few years ago. It was very hard to find a replacement as they aren’t very common anymore.

      During the day it stays in the 80°F range (26°C) but the nights have cooled very comfortably. It’s been so hot and dry that when it finally rained last Thursday, a real all-day sustained downpour which made the grass almost green again, people were smiling to get wet. I can only image how exhilarating the rain in Australia felt after such a long drought…

      I worried about the gingko when it started to leaf back in March. A big deep frost made them drop and I pictured a bare tree for the summer. Some branches did die, but it is nice and green now! I don’t suppose there will be many nuts this fall though. I don’t see much evidence of them developing yet.

      Happy spring. Such a fresh future-looking time of year.
      ≥^!^≤ xoxo

    • Thanks Ron,
      I’ll keep that bookmarked! So far the “new” one has survived the move to our “new” house and sits more safely on a counter near the sink for washing.
      My brothers remember the camp coffee they made in the woods cabin with our dad: a pot of water over wood fire, dump in ground beans, boil, and compliment the cook.
      mmmm Just the way I like it!
      Same with the eggs, beans, toast, and all…

    • I think these noodles are becoming more popular: Whole Foods in the U.S. might be stocking them. I’ve never seen the actual leaves, dried or fresh of moroheiya.

  4. I’m addicted to green noodles, but have never tried the soup base. I find the texture of these noodles to be infinitely better than any other instant ramen I’ve had, so chewy and it’s not junk food. The trick to making the best of green noodle is to not overcook them. I like them al dente, rinsed in cold water, drained then mixed with a peanut butter or almond butter dressing. Yum!

    • I agree! They cook very fast so the key trick is not to get distracted once they go into the boiling water! I’ve forgotten about almond butter, but I remember it was delicious. Almonds and shisho also go well together. Note to self: try this combo soon! ≥^!^≤

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