Why is fried noodles called “yakisoba”?

… because “soba” means buckwheat and therefore (usually grey) buckwheat noodles, but yakisoba is made from ones made from wheat flour that are similar to ramen noodles. “Yaki udon” is made from udon (fat white wheat flour noodles), but yakisoba ain’t made from soba?? What is going on?? 

My family tell me that it couldn’t be called “yaki ramen” because ramen is the name of the dish made with a soup made from stock, rather than just the ingredient that is the noodles. Wikipedia also says that “yaki soba” can just be translated as “fried noodles”. There are, however, two perfectly good expressions for noodles generally, being “men” (as in the second syllable of “ramen”) and “nuuduru” (Japanese pron of the English word “noodles”). There general statement that “I want to eat noodles (rather than rice)” in Japanese is therefore “Menrui tabetai” and not “Soba tabetai”, which would be specific to those buckwheat noodles.

That would make the proper words for yakisoba “yakimen” (which has a nice sound to it, actually) or “yaki nuuduru” (which doesn’t).

Any ideas why it isn’t that but is “yakisoba” instead?


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