itsu 3 minute noodle pot Original Thai Flavour

I couldn’t help licking my fingers after opening the sachet of “heavenly broth paste”, confidently named by the people at itsu. It tasted promising- a strong Thai lemongrass with a chilli kick. Unfortunately, I followed the instructions to the letter, adding boiling water to the suggested fill level.

The result is a watery, bland mess. I’m sure this would have tasted much more exciting had I used 30% less water, but if you can’t trust the manufacturer’s instructions, what can you trust?

The curious noodles are thicker than any I’ve ever eaten before, like 8 strands of spaghetti stuck together. Their thickness only draws attention to the lack of flavour that comes with eating an entire noodle, battling through a stodgy mixture of wheat flour and starch… not to mention six E chemicals listed amongst the ingredients.

The packaging reminds me of something off BBC1’s The Apprentice; big, colourful, eye-catching, marketable. You have to open and empty three sachets, following instructions as if assembling a childhood toy. This is quite fun for a first experience, but I can see the novelty wearing off and it does increase one’s expectations of the end result, which ends up falling flat.

I was halfway through the meal when I realised some of the paste had settled at the bottom, despite my stirring efforts. The taste got ever more powerful and bitter, becoming quite an unpleasant experience.

When I’d deduced that I’d eaten all of the noodles, I couldn’t face eating the mixture of herbs and paste and vegetables and water that were gathering menacingly at the bottom of the pot. I threw it away.

This has been more exciting than many of my lunches, but not always for the right reasons. I like that there is a spoon included. Unfortunately, that won’t save it from the score I have no choice but to give.