Wednesday, April 27, 2011

FUEL Better: Pasta

Kung Fu Noodles...

Did you know that noodles actually originated in China?

They are also a rich part of the culinary culture in Vietnam, Thailand, Japan, Korea and Indonesia. Asian pasta offer a wide variety of flavors, textures and nutritional benefits sometimes not found in the traditional American noodle.  Most located in local health food stores or specialty groceries.

Next time you make your favorite pasta dish try one of these:

Soba Noodles:
o   Made from buckwheat flour, nutty-tasting Japanese soba noodles area good source of complex carbohydrates, protein and the antioxidant rutin, which may help lower cholesterol and protect against inflammation. 

o   You can replace any traditional noodle with soba noodles. Try them in miso soup or tossed with thinly sliced vegetables and spicy peanut sauce for an Asian kick.

Shirataki Noodles:
o   Thin, chewy shirataki noodles can be bland on their own, but they readily pick up accompanying flavors. Made from yam starch, they’re very low in calories and are a good source of fiber.

o   Use them to add a fresh twist to your homemade chicken soup or as a base for your favorite stir fry. You can also half and half them with traditional angel hair pasta. This will cut down on the calories of the dish as long as you do not eat twice as much!!

Bean Thread Noodles:
o   These delicate, translucent strands, sometimes called glass or cellophane noodles, are made from the starch of mung beans. They’re a good source of gluten-free complex carbs, iron and selenium.

o    Try them in a cool salad with a healthy dose of herbs and tangy Asian inspired vinaigrette.

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