You can’t miss the onslaught on most streets in Nigeria.
At any time of the day, for different demographics and social strata, noodles and eggs, either fried or boiled, has warmed its way into the hearts of many Nigerians as a proffered fast-food meal.
Given the fact that Nigeria is one of the largest markets for noodles consumption globally, the convenience of preparation helps in drawing many people to it.
The meal, which is said to have originated from the ancient Han Dynasty of olden days China, is now a popular meal in many Nigerian homes, perhaps because of the short time required to prepare it.
There is more – it is relatively cheaper, at least compared to bread and rice; easy to make, and absolutely delicious.
Gone are the days when mainly pupils and students are its chief customers. Adults, especially the working class, have also now embraced the meal, either for breakfasts or dinner, or as a lunch snack.
Hannah Fayemi has been slurping down noodles for as long as she can remember. Today, the 20-year-old says her monthly groceries shopping is not complete without purchasing a carton of instant noodles.
“My mum used to make it almost every morning when I was still in primary school. It was a standard breakfast meal then (laughs). It doesn’t matter how many times I eat in a day, noodles are just a delight,” she said.
A few years ago, the combination of tea and bread was one of the most popular breakfast meals in many Nigerian homes and at street corners for dinner, until popular noodles brand ‘Indomie’ made its way into the Nigerian market. ‘Indomie’ practically replaced the word ‘noodles’ because it had a near-monopoly of the market then.
It was so ubiquitous that, for many Nigerians, all noodles were ‘Indomie’.
Another major reason for the phenomenal popularity of noodles in Nigeria is her population, which is slightly more than 200 million now. The country is expected to rise astronomically by 2050, according to a UN study. This indicates that the Nigerian population will be younger with an average mother having between four and five children to feed.
Noodles brands, however, come in with ads positioning themselves as quick-and-easy options for overworked Nigerian mothers.
Regardless of the brand you fancy, as a matter of fact, noodles are almost always what comes to mind when you are out of options or indecisive on what to eat.
Although the noodles are packaged with all the necessary ingredients that are needed for preparing them, adding eggs (either fried or boiled) is now more of a ritual than a necessity.
There is always the extra Nigerian touch that makes the meal stand out from the other ways it is being prepared all over the world. Households in Nigeria and roadside vendors (popularly referred to as mai shayi in local parlance) have devised a number of recipes for preparing noodles and eggs. From stir fry noodles, noodles pepper soup to the very spicy noodles with fried eggs, this staple food has come a long way and is definitely a joy giver.
Noodles can be enjoyed both indoors and outdoors. Whether you are in the comfort of your dining room or not, you can enjoy your meal of noodles.
TCN has compiled five spots in Lagos that will help you have a homey feeling when you eat noodles at these spots.
You can try out these spots:
Indomie Cafe is reputed to be the first Noodle restaurant in Nigeria. Its delicious and innovative recipes offer spicy taste and visual treats for all. Indomie Cafe is a go-to place for delicious food and a great time with friends and family. It is located at Leisure Mall, Adeniran Ogunsanya Street, Surulere, Lagos.
Chownoodle Bar, Lekki
Chownoodle boasts of “quality noodle stirfrys wok tossed to perfection in signature sauce”. Made with the finest Asian spices and sauces, the meal is uniquely crafted to suit your taste buds and keep you coming back for more.
Mealstickk has a long-standing passion of delivering quality and exceptional meals to customers. Apart from the fact that Mealstickk noodle is to die for, the restaurant places much premium on the hygienic nature of meals it delivers. You’ll find Mealstickk at 23 Oluwaleimu Street in Ikeja.
Pondicheri is an Indian restaurant situated in Ilupeju, Lagos. Apart from other mouthwatering meals on its menu, the noodles is set to take your palate to an exciting match, just like India vs. Pakistan. It promises a culinary experience that will win your heart.
Serving gourmet style comfort food, inspired by meals from around the world, this restaurant boasts of the best noodles around with a beautiful space. HSE gourmet assures you of a journey through its “Global Plates” concept. It is situated at 25 Babatope Bejide Crescent, Lekki.