~*~ ANNOUNCEMENT ~*~
Today is the first in a series called Snack of the Week. I taste, research, and review snack brands from around the world to find new flavors. I’m actually having a hard time typing this because I keep reaching my fingers into this bag—a good sign already!
This week, I’m munching on Nongshim Shrimp Crackers, a common snack in Southeast Asia, specifically in Korea (새우깡) and Japan (かっぱえびせん), since the 1970s. Nongshim, which translates to “farmer’s heart”, is a South Korean food & drink company whose mission is sharing original health products to consumers worldwide (that’s me! and hopefully you!). Primarily known for their award-winning noodle bowls, Nongshim also provides a variety of bagged snacks that are equally superior, specifically Shrimp Crackers—the first commercialized snack in South Korea.
These french fry-shaped puffs are made of simple ingredients, mainly wheat flour, ground shrimp, and umami seasonings (i.e mushroom and seaweed). But a word of caution, opening and sniffing the bag will result in a rush of concentrated ocean smells. Not a bad thing if you’re a seafood lover, but a little off-putting if you’re not used to it. Thankfully, it’s subtle enough in shrimp flavor that your mouth won’t reek of fish. As far as texture goes, its crunch is right between Cheese Puffs and Cheetos, not too firm, but not too soft. Goldilocks would definitely approve.
Now these are far from what I consider “crackers” because I will NOT be spreading cheese on them. However, they would pair beautifully with a tuna salad sandwich or fried fish burger. I would even experiment with a crushed Shrimp Cracker topping on salads, omelets, or casseroles. They’re not at all salty like the sea and even better, they don’t leave a dusty coating on your fingers. As tasty as they are on their own, finishing Shrimp Crackers with a bit of lemon zest will make them all the more addicting.
A light, crunchy snack, not at all oily, fattening, or messy. I didn’t feel disgusting after eating the whole bag, probably because I associate seafood with health.
The snack bag is larger than average. A Lays potato chip snack bag is 1.5 oz, while Nongshim’s are 2.6 oz. So it’s easier to eat more than you intend to.
If you like umami-packed asian flavors, then treat yourself to a bag of Nongshim Shrimp Crackers. They come in a Spicy variety that I can only imagine has even better flavor. Available on Amazon as well as Walmart, Costco, and other connivence stores or asian markets.
Please give them a try and let me know what you think!
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