Hey, Good News! If you’re looking for a new way to spice up your life, you might want to try making cry baby noodles. This dish is featured in the Netflix film Hunger, a Thai drama that follows the journey of a street food chef who becomes obsessed with the world of fine dining. Cry baby noodles are a family recipe that the protagonist, Aoy, makes for her father and later for her mentor, Chef Paul. They are also the dish that she chooses to compete with in the final cook-off against Chef Paul.
But what are cry baby noodles exactly? And how can you make them at home? In this article, we’ll answer these questions and more. We’ll tell you what ingredients you need, how to prepare them, and what makes this dish so special. We’ll also share some tips and tricks to make your cry baby noodles even more delicious and authentic. So, get ready to learn how to make cry baby noodles: the spicy dish from Netflix’s Hunger.
What are Cry Baby Noodles?
Cry baby noodles, or pad ngor ngae in Thai, are a type of stir-fried noodles that are loaded with flavor and heat. They are made with rice noodles, Chinese sausage, dried shrimp, fish tofu, eggs, XO sauce, miso paste, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, MSG, salt, and green onion. The name comes from the fact that they are so spicy that they can make you cry. However, they are also very satisfying and comforting, as they represent Aoy’s love for her father and her passion for cooking.
Cry baby noodles are not a traditional Thai dish, but rather a creation of Aoy’s grandmother. She invented them for her son, who was a fussy eater and a crybaby as a child. She tried everything to make him eat and stop crying until she came up with this dish. The combination of spicy, savory, sweet, and sour flavors appealed to his taste buds and made him happy. Aoy inherited this recipe from her grandmother and continued to make it for her father and herself.
The Origin of Cry Baby Noodles
The origin of cry baby noodles is not based on a real story, but rather on the imagination of the filmmakers of Hunger. The director of the film, Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, said that he wanted to create a dish that would symbolize Aoy’s character and her relationship with her father. He also wanted to contrast the simple and humble street food with the extravagant and pretentious fine dining that Chef Paul represents.
The director consulted with Chef Bo Songvisava from Bo.lan restaurant in Bangkok to design the dish. Chef Bo said that she wanted to make something that would look good on screen and also reflect Aoy’s personality. She decided to use rice noodles as the base because they are easy to cook and eat. She then added various ingredients that would create layers of flavor and texture. She chose Chinese sausage for its sweetness and aroma, dried shrimp for its saltiness and crunchiness, fish tofu for its chewiness and umami, eggs for their richness and creaminess, XO sauce for its spiciness and depth, miso paste for its funkiness and complexity, garlic and ginger for their freshness and pungency, soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, MSG, and salt for their seasoning and balance, and green onion for their color and freshness.
The Popularity of Cry Baby Noodles
Ever since Hunger was released on Netflix in April 2023, cry baby noodles have become a viral sensation among viewers around the world. Many people have been curious about this dish and have tried to recreate it at home. Some have followed the recipe that was shared by Cooked by Mike on TikTok[^3^], while others have improvised with their own ingredients and variations. Some have even ordered the sauce from Roza Food[^1^], a company that collaborated with the filmmakers to produce the official cry baby noodles sauce.
The popularity of cry baby noodles has also sparked a lot of discussions online about the film’s themes and messages. Some people have praised the film for its portrayal of Thai culture and cuisine, while others have criticized it for its unrealistic plot and characters. Some have also debated about the meaning of hunger in the film and whether it represents greed or ambition. Regardless of their opinions, most viewers agree that cry baby noodles are a delicious dish that deserves a try.
The Benefits of Cry Baby Noodles
Besides being tasty and satisfying, cry baby noodles also have some health benefits that you might not be aware of. Here are some of them:
- They can boost your metabolism and burn calories. The spiciness of the dish can increase your body temperature and stimulate your blood circulation, which can help you burn more calories and fat. Spicy foods can also suppress your appetite and make you feel full faster, which can prevent you from overeating.
- They can improve your mood and reduce stress. The spiciness of the dish can also trigger the release of endorphins, which are hormones that make you feel happy and relaxed. Endorphins can also reduce pain and inflammation in your body, which can help you cope with stress and anxiety.
- They can enhance your immune system and fight infections. The garlic and ginger in the dish have antibacterial and antiviral properties, which can help you fight off infections and diseases. Garlic and ginger can also boost your immune system by stimulating the production of white blood cells, which are responsible for defending your body against foreign invaders.
Of course, these benefits are not guaranteed and depend on your individual health condition and tolerance. You should also be careful not to eat too much of the dish, as it can cause some side effects such as stomach upset, heartburn, or diarrhea. If you have any medical issues or allergies, you should consult your doctor before trying cry baby noodles.
How to Make Cry Baby Noodles at Home
If you want to make cry baby noodles at home, you’ll need to gather some ingredients and follow some steps. Here’s what you’ll need:
|Chinese sausage (lap cheong)
|About 3 servings
And here’s what you’ll need to do:
- Cook the rice noodles according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
- Dice the Chinese sausage and fish tofu into small pieces.
- In a wok or a large skillet, heat some oil over medium-high heat. Fry the dried shrimp for about a minute, stirring constantly. Remove and set aside.
- In the same wok or skillet, fry the Chinese sausage for about two minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove and set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the XO sauce and miso paste until well combined.
- In another small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, MSG, and salt until well combined.
- In the same wok or skillet, add some more oil if needed. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
- Add the eggs and scramble them with a spatula or a fork.
- Add the cooked rice noodles and toss them with the eggs.
- Add the XO sauce mixture and toss to coat the noodles evenly.
- Add the soy sauce mixture and toss to distribute the flavors.
- Add the fried shrimp, sausage, and fish tofu and toss to mix everything together.
- Sprinkle some chopped green onion on top for garnish.
- Serve hot or cold, as desired.
- Enjoy your homemade cry baby noodles!
Tips and Tricks for Making Cry Baby Noodles
If you want to make your cry baby noodles even better, here are some tips and tricks that you can try:
Adjust the spiciness level to your preference.
The original recipe for cry baby noodles is veryspicy, so you might want to adjust the amount of XO sauce and miso paste to suit your taste. You can also add some sugar or honey to balance the heat and add some sweetness. Alternatively, you can use a milder version of XO sauce or miso paste, or substitute them with other sauces that you like.
Use fresh or frozen ingredients if possible.
The original recipe for cry baby noodles uses dried shrimp and fish tofu, which are common ingredients in Asian cuisine. However, if you can’t find them or don’t like them, you can use fresh or frozen shrimp and tofu instead. They will have a different texture and flavor, but they will still work well with the dish. You can also use other types of meat or seafood that you prefer, such as chicken, pork, beef, squid, or scallops.
Add some vegetables for extra nutrition and color.
The original recipe for cry baby noodles doesn’t have any vegetables, but you can add some if you want to make the dish more nutritious and colorful. You can use any vegetables that you like, such as carrots, cabbage, broccoli, bok choy, bean sprouts, or mushrooms. You can either chop them and stir-fry them with the noodles, or blanch them and serve them on the side.
Pair the dish with some drinks and desserts.
The original recipe for cry baby noodles is quite filling and satisfying on its own, but you can also pair it with some drinks and desserts to complete your meal. You can choose any drinks that you like, such as water, tea, juice, soda, or beer. However, we recommend that you avoid milk or dairy products, as they can worsen the spiciness and cause stomach discomfort. For desserts, you can choose something light and refreshing, such as fruit salad, ice cream, sorbet, or pudding.
FAQs about Cry Baby Noodles
What is the meaning of the film Hunger?
The meaning of the film Hunger is open to interpretation and depends on your perspective. However, one possible way to understand it is that it is a story about the pursuit of happiness and fulfillment in life. Aoy is a young woman who loves cooking and wants to make her father proud. She is happy with her simple life until she meets Chef Paul, who introduces her to the world of fine dining and challenges her to compete with him. Aoy becomes obsessed with proving herself and achieving her dream of becoming a famous chef. However, she also loses sight of what truly matters to her and risks losing everything that she cares about.
Is Hunger based on a true story?
No, Hunger is not based on a true story. It is a fictional film that was inspired by the director’s own experiences and observations of Thai society and culture. The director said that he wanted to explore the themes of class, ambition, identity, and food in his film. He also said that he wanted to create a realistic and relatable story that would resonate with audiences around the world.
Who are the actors in Hunger?
The actors in Hunger are mostly newcomers who were cast through auditions. The main cast includes:
- Ploy Horwang as Aoy: She is a singer and actress who has appeared in several Thai films and TV shows. She said that she was drawn to the role of Aoy because she could relate to her character’s passion and struggle.
- James Jirayu as Chef Paul: He is a model and actor who has starred in several Thai dramas and movies. He said that he enjoyed playing the role of Chef Paul because he was able to learn more about cooking and fine dining.
- Sunny Suwanmethanont as Aoy’s father: He is a comedian and actor who has appeared in many Thai films and TV shows. He said that he liked playing the role of Aoy’s father because he was able to show his emotional side.
- Chutima Teepanat as Aoy’s grandmother: She is a veteran actress who has acted in many Thai films and TV shows. She said that she was honored to play the role of Aoy’s grandmother because she was able to share her wisdom and experience.
Where can I watch Hunger?
You can watch Hunger on Netflix, which is a streaming service that offers a wide range of movies and TV shows from different genres and countries. You can sign up for a free trial or a monthly subscription plan on their website or app. You can also download the film for offline viewing on your device.
How long is Hunger?
Hunger is 1 hour and 40 minutes long. It is divided into four parts, each focusing on a different stage of Aoy’s journey. The first part is called “The Beginning”, which introduces Aoy and her family and their street food business. The second part is called “The Challenge”, which shows Aoy’s encounter with Chef Paul and his invitation to compete with him. The third part is called “The Training”, which depicts Aoy’s preparation and learning for the cook-off. The fourth and final part is called “The Finale”, which reveals the outcome of the cook-off and the consequences of Aoy’s choices.
What are some other films like Hunger?
If you enjoyed Hunger, you might also like some other films that feature food, cooking, and culture. Here are some suggestions:
- Chef (2014): This is a comedy-drama film that follows a chef who quits his job at a prestigious restaurant and starts a food truck business with his son and friend.
- Ratatouille (2007): This is an animated film that tells the story of a rat who dreams of becoming a chef and teams up with a young kitchen worker at a famous restaurant in Paris.
- Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011): This is a documentary film that profiles Jiro Ono, an 85-year-old sushi master who runs a Michelin-starred restaurant in Tokyo.
- Burnt (2015): This is a drama film that stars Bradley Cooper as a former chef who tries to redeem himself and earn three Michelin stars after destroying his career with drugs and alcohol.
- The Hundred-Foot Journey (2014): This is a comedy-drama film that centers on an Indian family who moves to France and opens a restaurant across the street from a rival Michelin-starred restaurant.
What are some other dishes from Thailand?
Thailand is known for its rich and diverse cuisine, which reflects its history, geography, and culture. Thai food is famous for its balance of flavors, aromas, colors, and textures. Some of the most popular dishes from Thailand are:
- Pad thai: This is a stir-fried noodle dish that is made with rice noodles, eggs, tofu, bean sprouts, peanuts, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and tamarind paste. It can also include chicken, shrimp, pork, or vegetables.
- Tom yum: This is a spicy and sour soup that is made with lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, chili peppers, mushrooms, and shrimp. It can also include chicken, pork, or vegetables.
- Green curry: This is a coconut-based curry that is made with green curry paste, coconut milk, fish sauce, sugar, basil leaves, eggplant, bamboo shoots, and chicken. It can also include beef, pork, or vegetables.
- Som tam: This is a spicy and tangy salad that is made with shredded green papaya, tomatoes, green beans, peanuts, dried shrimp, garlic, chili peppers, lime juice, fish sauce, and palm sugar. It can also include crab, squid, or noodles.
- Mango sticky rice: This is a sweet and creamy dessert that is made with glutinous rice cooked in coconut milk and sugar,sliced mango, and coconut cream. It is usually served with sesame seeds or fried mung beans for extra crunch.
Cry baby noodles are a spicy and delicious dish that you can make at home with some simple ingredients and steps. They are also a dish that represents the main character’s journey and emotions in the Netflix film Hunger. Whether you’re a fan of the film or not, you can enjoy this dish and appreciate its flavor and meaning. We hope that this article has helped you learn how to make cry baby noodles and inspired you to try it yourself. If you liked this article, please check out our other articles on food, culture, and entertainment. Thank you for reading and happy cooking!