If all goes according to plan, Ejji Ramen should be opening sometime this month in Belvedere Square Market at the Ikan Sushi’s former spot. I sat down with Oscar Lee, co-owner of Chocolatea Café and his uncle, Chef Ten Vong, partners in Ejji Ramen for insight as to what they will be serving when Ejji Ramen opens and their native Malaysian influences.
Yes there will be ramen and assortment of noodle soups: curry laksa (Malaysian spicy noodle soup) and Vietnamese gluten-free pho offering long simmered broths like tonkotsu (pork). Vegetarians have choices with vegetarian miso and vegetable noodles. Patrons can expect the added bonus of Malaysian satays, sambals along with Japanese yakatori.
Malaysia’s populous is a majority of three ethnicities: Chinese, Malays and Indians whose influences can be found in their melting pot cuisine along with Thai, Indonesian and Portuguese. The pronounced flavor profiles in Malaysian food tend to be kaffir lime leaves, belecan -fermented shrimp paste, galangal and coconut.
At Ejji Ramen you can slurp your noodles at their bamboo counter or take your food out into the market to their communal tables. Don’t forget to order a sake or beer to cool off your palate.
Chef Ten Vong, Malaysian by birth, spent a good deal of his early culinary career here in Baltimore at Citronelle, Jennier’s and the Milton Inn and even had his own restaurant called Profusions almost 20 years ago. Over that period of time chef has been in New York City heading up the kitchens at Yumcha, Yourasian, Barmaché, Bread, and Meet.
Not sure about ramen, there are numerous choices, broths, toppings – let me direct you to Serious Eats Guide to Ramen Styles – you will be well informed.
Expect that social media will explode once Ejji Ramen opens so follow them on Twitter @EjjiRamen or on Facebook
Ejji Ramen – Belvedere Square Market – 529 E. Belvedere Avenue – Baltimore, MD 21212