You’re not dreaming. Fried chicken and ramen have indeed come together for an epic food item.
It’s time to take a trip back to your younger days: Brooklyn’s Hey Hey Canteen, located on the border of Park Slope and Gowanus, is cooking up a ramen-crusted fried chicken sandwich.
It took Canteen owner Kay Ch’ien, executive chef Carlos Barrera and consulting chef Irene Khin Wong about three months to perfect the Hong Kong Fried Chicken Sandwich, but their big breakthrough came when they figured out the crust: crushed ramen noodles and how to keep it crispy.
The instant noodles used for the chicken’s crust are the restaurant’s “one naughty food item” said Ch’ien, a Hong Kong-native; from crushing the ramen for the breading to spicing up their flour mixture with the little flavor packets, the whole instant noodle package is used to make this one-of-a-kind sandwich.
The restaurant, which opened on June 8, serves lunch, dinner and afternoon tea with an upscale Chinese takeout twist. Ch’ien noted that most of the menu is fairly wholesome, with picks like chrysanthemum caesar salad, spicy matcha soba noodles and turmeric-ginger cayenne tea. The restaurant uses tamari, rather than soy sauce, making it possible for many of their dishes to be completely gluten-free while maintaining that traditional fermented flavor.
“It satisfies that Chinese takeout craving, but you feel good afterwards,” Ch’ien said of the majority of the menu.
The name for Hey Hey Canteen plays off of the Cantonese idea of “double happiness”: “happy” is pronounced like “hey” in Cantonese.
We went behind the scenes to see how the sandwich gets made: