Marukin Ramen Updated Menu

I’ve written about Marukin Ramen before when they first soft opened their SE Ankeny location and talked you through the difference between their ramen offerings. Since then, they have opened their second location at Pine Street Market, they’ve increased the amount of noodles to upside the hearty fullness of their bowls, as the kitchen has gotten more efficient and accurate they now offer more to choose from! Here’s a look at what’s new at Marukin Ramen.
Marukin Ramen Updated Menu Marukin vegan mapo tofu over rice, and the only once a week, 30 bowls limited edition Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi Marukin Ramen Special Ramen, available only once a week at each location and limited to about 30 bowls because of the amount of work required to create it! Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi  Marukin Ramen Updated Menu addition of vegan mapo tofu over rice

As before, Marukin overall offers 10 kinds of ramen total (get my photos and description of them here), with the Tonkotsu Shoyu and Tonkatsu Red always being available and the other 8 rotating every other day so that 4 are available on a Sun Wed Fri schedule and the other 4 available the other days. Note this important trick: really all 10 ramens are always available – the every other day rotation is reverse at the other location, so if you really want a certain ramen besides the Tonkotsu just look up which location has it that day, the SE Ankeny or the Pine Street Market.
Marukin Ramen Paitan Shio with rich chicken broth, sea salt and toppings of spinach, bamboo shoots, kikurage mushrooms leeks, green onion, chashu pork, soft boiled egg Marukin Ramen Tonkotsu Red Ramen with spicy pork bone broth, shoyu with toppings of spinach, kikurage, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, leeks, green onion, chashu pork, soft boiled egg

New Scoop! Breaking News! Marukin Ramen is going to start offering a Secret Special Ramen, available only once a week at each location and limited to about 30 bowls because of the amount of work required to create it! Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi. The ramen will only be announced when it’s available on their social media, so if you don’t follow Marukin Ramen @marukinramen on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook do so now to be in the know.
Marukin Ramen Special Ramen, available only once a week at each location and limited to about 30 bowls because of the amount of work required to create it! Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi Marukin Ramen Special Ramen, available only once a week at each location and limited to about 30 bowls because of the amount of work required to create it! Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi
Their ramen is not available to go since they want to make sure the texture of the noodles and temperature of the broth are perfect – but you can get their newly added donburi, or rice bowls, to eat their or to go at home or at your work desk as applicable. Newly added are a delicious pan fried Jorinji miso pork over rice utilizing local pork and local miso. Though this is the menu now, they may decide to rotate this when the weather warms up – so get over there to get this dish now.
Marukin Ramen Updated Manu includes a new pan fried Jorinji miso pork over rice dish utilizing local pork and local miso Marukin Ramen Updated Manu includes a new pan fried Jorinji miso pork over rice dish utilizing local pork and local miso

Also perfect right now for warming you up is a hearty pork curry with rice dish and a vegan mapo tofu over rice. The pork curry is also available in a small size during their happy hour.
"Marukin Marukin Ramen Updated Menu addition of vegan mapo tofu over rice

Meanwhile in the sides section, they’ve changed out the aioli that used to accompany the chicken karaage  (Japanese style fried chicken) with a Japanese style tartar sauce.
Marukin Ramen Updated Menu, Marukin Ramen changed out the aioli that used to accompany the chicken karaage (Japanese style fried chicken) with a Japanese style tartar sauce, dish of light shredded daikon salad with ume plum vinaigrette and nukazuke, or Japanese pickled vegetables "Marukin

In addition there is now a shrimp version of the dish, ebi karaage, a deep fried tiger shrimp karaage with Japanese style tartar sauce.
Marukin Ramen Updated Menu, Ebi Karaage, a deep fried tiger shrimp karaage with Japanese style tartar sauce.

Additionally, for the gyoza, or pot stickers, that had a pork filling, there is also an option now for another kind of gyoza with pork and shrimp filling.
Marukin Ramen Gyoza, pork filled potsticker dumplings "Marukin

A light shredded daikon salad with ume plum vinaigrette and a salmon nanbanzuke, a dish of marinated salmon and pickled vegetables, are also new. Both of these latter dishes are also available on their happy hour menu 3 – 6 PM.
Marukin Ramen side (also available at happy hour) of light shredded daikon salad with ume plum vinaigrette and nukazuke, or Japanese pickled vegetables Marukin Ramen side (also available at happy hour) of light shredded daikon salad with ume plum vinaigrette Marukin Ramen side (also available at happy hour) of salmon nanbanzuke, a dish of marinated salmon and pickled vegetables and nukazuke, or Japanese pickled vegetables Marukin Ramen side (also available at happy hour) of salmon nanbanzuke, a dish of marinated salmon and pickled vegetables

Have you been to Marukin Ramen yet? What did you enjoy?
Marukin Ramen meal Marukin Ramen meal

Do any of these updates to the menu intrigue you, what would you try?
Marukin Ramen Updated Menu Marukin vegan mapo tofu over rice, and the only once a week, 30 bowls limited edition Ebi Ramen, a Rich Tiger Shrimp and chicken based broth with sea salt topped with tiger shrimp, bok choy, mushroom age-tofu mix, kikurage, and negi

Marukin Ramen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato Marukin Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Portland Musubi and Onigiri and more!

I usually wait a while before trumpeting how awesome a new place is – there’s just time needed to get service up to speed and work through bumps and get consistency. But sometimes, there’s a place so good that I need all of you to start visiting ASAP to support their awesomeness. Musubi is one of those places. Perhaps my keychain charm and my dish towel also reveal a slight bias.
Musubi in Portland, the onigiri is carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it, and they make their own version of Spam and offer a vegetarian version using local tofu for the musubi. Everything is under $4

Brand spanking new, they are currently only open on weekdays 8 AM – 3 PM. Update they are now open Saturday and Sunday 10 AM – 5 PM now too! Yeah, basically like food truck hours though they have a brick and mortar space at 2134 SE Division St but it’s more geared to take-out and delivery than dining there (seating wise there are only a handful of stools). They also are offering delivery if you text your order for group orders within a certain delivery area and they can even function as essentially a pop up to a workplace of 5-10 people, make sure you check their map.

I selfishly want all of us to show them enough love (and money) that they can expand their days and hours- especially at least to the weekends which they are tentatively saying could be in November. In Japan, we pretty much stopped to get onigiri every day that we threw in our bag as a snack, especially for hikes or as snacks for long train rides – and I stocked up on musubi when we were in Hawaii for fuel in our bags as well – musubi was my gateway to Spam.
Onigiri offerings in Japan at a convenience store
Example Onigiri in Japan

As you can see, taking it to go the triangle ones are carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it- and it keeps it separate so the seaweed stays crispy and dry away from the more moist rice portion until the moment of consumption and you bring it together.
Musubi in Portland, the onigiri is carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it- and it keeps it separate so the seaweed stays crispy and dry away from the more moist rice portion until the moment of consumption and you bring it together. Musubi in Portland, the onigiri is carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it- and it keeps it separate so the seaweed stays crispy and dry away from the more moist rice portion until the moment of consumption and you bring it together. Musubi in Portland, the onigiri is carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it- and it keeps it separate so the seaweed stays crispy and dry away from the more moist rice portion until the moment of consumption and you bring it together. Musubi in Portland, the onigiri is carefully packaged in plastic with a red strip guiding you how to open it- and it keeps it separate so the seaweed stays crispy and dry away from the more moist rice portion until the moment of consumption and you bring it together.

Don’t worry if you tear it incorrectly in your excitement – as long as you keep the seaweed in one piece, you can just put it in and wrap it to eat. Or, just eat the rice ball without the seaweed coat if you’d like (which is what I did for the 2 photos below)

Musubi offers 7 onigiri, also known as o-musubi (the triangle shape rice balls in which usually have the highlighted ingredient packed inside the rice ball then enveloped in seaweed paper) and 2 musubi (the rectangle shape rice shape that has the protein tied on top like you tie a canoe on car roof but with a seaweed belt, a snack that you will usually see in Hawaii). 3 of the onigiri and 1 of the musubi are vegan.
Musubi Portland's onigiri, naked without the seaweed sheet! Musubi Portland's onigiri, naked without the seaweed sheet and cut in half so you can see the spicy tuna mayo filling here
Oh no the onigiri is naked!

There may be additional kinds of ingredients that come and go based on specials of the day – follow them on social media on Facebook at grindmusubi or Instagram @grindmusubi or Twitter @grindmusubi to keep up to date on limited edition specials. The rice used in all are Koshihikari Japanese rice and they utilize Yamasa Tamari Shoyu which is locally made in Salem Oregon and contains only organic soybeans and no wheat so everything is gluten free.

Triangle

Musubi Portland's onigiri are great to take to go to a picnic, on a hike, or to a beer bar that lets you bring your own food Musubi Portland's onigiri are great to take to go to a picnic, on a hike, or to a beer bar that lets you bring your own food Musubi Portland's onigiri are great to take to go to a picnic, on a hike, or to a beer bar that lets you bring your own food Musubi Portland's onigiri are great to take to go to a picnic, on a hike, or to a beer bar that lets you bring your own food

  • Just Rice: Vegan Bitterman Salts’ Japanese cherry plum salt.
  • Sour Plum: Vegan Japanese ume plum pickled and aged with shiso leaves and salt, this umeboshi was a consistent presence when we were in Japan last year because it is so traditional. It is sour with a bit of sweet and salty so some people like how the rice grounds it, while others that shock of sour that reminds me a bit of a sour beer and it can add up to be a little too much
  • Seasoned Kelp: Vegan This is Konbu, or sea kelp with tamari soy sauce (no wheat) and hint of yuzu (a citrus fruit) so it’s like a combo of when you have a sushi roll and give it a good dip on soy sauce. This was F’s favorite as a vegetarian or vegan option.
    Musubi Portland's Seasoned Kelp is a vegan onigiri
  • Shoyu and Bonito: Bonito is fish so this not vegetarian (it’s dried here and shaved very thin like the thinnest of tissue paper), and expect this to be a stronger variation of a bit of fishy salty taste and rice
  • Spicy Tuna Mayo: A mix of albacore tuna with Kewpie Japanese mayo and shichimi seven spice mix. This was my favorite kind to get when I was in Japan because I like the slight kick of spiciness
    Musubi Portland's Spicy Tuna Mayo onigiri, a mix of albacore tuna with Kewpie Japanese mayo and shichimi seven spice mix
  • Salted Salmon: Fresh wild caught NW salmon cured overnight with Maldon flake salt rub and grilled, a great option if you really prefer your fish cooked with your rice ball
    Musubi Portland's Salted Salmon onigiri, Fresh wild caught NW salmon cured overnight with Maldon flake salt rub and grilled
  • Chicken Curry: This is the most not Japanese I thought of the flavors so I thought it was intriguing, since the locally raised, cage and hormone free chicken thighs are marinated in a housemade Thai curry
    Musubi Portland's Chicken Curry onigiri

Rectangle

If you are wondering the size, I plated these on my espresso saucers.

  • Teriyaki Tofu: Vegan Local Ota tofu marinated in their housemade teriyaki sauce and grilled
    Musubi in Portland, Teriyaki Tofu with Local Ota tofu marinated in their housemade teriyaki sauce and grilled Musubi in Portland, Teriyaki Tofu with Local Ota tofu marinated in their housemade teriyaki sauce and grilled
  • Artisanal Spam: Wow, they make their own version of SPAM so instead of the can they use their own pork shoulder, uncured ham, salt and garlic and housemade teriyaki glaze for a more healthful choice then actual SPAM. Impressed. This is the most “expensive” of the offerings they have on the menu at $3.75.
    Musubi in Portland, Artisanal Spam musubi, they make their own version of SPAM so instead of the can they use their own pork shoulder, uncured ham, salt and garlic and housemade teriyaki glaze. Musubi in Portland, Artisanal Spam musubi, they make their own version of SPAM so instead of the can they use their own pork shoulder, uncured ham, salt and garlic and housemade teriyaki glaze.

Sides

  • Onolicious Miso Soup: Housemade dashi base whisked with premium Awase miso paste, Ota tofu, roasted sweet potato – my favorite of the sides but you pretty much have to enjoy it fresh and warm right away. The use of that roasted sweet potato really gives it extra depth from the thin standard miso soup you may normally be used to – I still drink it while eating bites of onigiri but it’s so chunky with tofu and sweet potato you’ll have to chew it too!
    Musubi in Portland, one of their side dishes Onolicious Miso Soup with Housemade dashi base whisked with premium Awase miso paste, Ota tofu, roasted sweet potato
  • Wakame Dulse Salad: Vegan A more traditional Japanese side with Japanese and Maine broadlead seaweeds in a tangy sweet dressing that is nice and light, not overpowering and which is a great accompaniment to counter the salty in many of the rice balls.
    Musubi in Portland, Wakame Dulse Salad side with Japanese and Maine broadlead seaweeds in a tangy sweet dressing
  • Takayo’s Mac Salad: A nod to Musubi’s Hawaiian roots here with Mama Takayo’s inspiration for this mix of elbow mac, Best Foods mayo, paprika, hardboiled eggs. The creaminess here gives you a nice break and adds richness to a rice ball meal.
    Musubi in Portland, Takayo's Mac Salad side and a nod to Musubi's Hawaiian roots here with Mama Takayo's inspiration for this mix of elbow mac, Best Foods mayo, paprika, hardboiled eggs
  • Daikon Yuzu Salad: Vegan more traditional Japanese side using shredded daikon radish, and the version I had also included jalapeno for a little burn as the daikon itself has more texture than flavor.
    Musubi in Portland, Daikon Yuzu Salad side dish, A more traditional Japanese side using shredded daikon radish and yuzu dressing flavors for a refreshing palate cleanser

Not only area they offering these affordable (everything on the menu is listed at less than $4) delicious nods to Japan and Hawaii, they are also going above and beyond by contributing to solve the Oregon hunger problem. With every musubi that you buy they are putting a dime into the collection jar and at the end of the year they will make a gift to a local hunger charity Portland Fruit Tree Project so that ending your hunger helps end hunger throughout Oregon.

Stop in to grab a bunch as your breakfast or lunch, or to throw in your bag as a snack. I bought a bunch of these to go to a beer share – so stop by and stock up like I did on your way to one of the many beer bars that let you bring your own food.
Musubi Portland's onigiri are great to take to go to a picnic, on a hike, or to a beer bar that lets you bring your own food

Size wise, one of these counts as a snack, for a meal you will want 2-3 of these and a side. While checking out as an option also sign up for their loyalty program by providing your phone number – every time you spend more than $3 you get a star, and once you get 12 stars you get a free musubi.

Have you had onigiri or musubi before? What would be your choice combo?

 

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