Being pre-diabetic and on the South Beach Diet I am always on the look out for healthy, low carb and interesting foods. Of late, I have discovered some pretty cool things, and I figured I should share them on OnTastenSee. I plan on doing a ‘Food Find’ post every other month. This will be a series of informational posts, mostly sharing what I have learnt and I will follow it up with a recipe featuring this Food Find.
To start off, what I envision to be an interesting series, this month’s feature is Shirataki Noodles. I came to know about these noodles while talking to a colleague who is also a low carb foodie like me. She mentioned that these were a healthy pasta replacement and a low carbers dream. I was unsure until I researched and tried it out myself. So, here are some facts that I found out.
What are Shirataki Noodles?
Shirataki Noodles, originally from Asia are made from a type of non glutionous flour from the ‘Konjac’ plant aka Konnyaku – a member of the Asian yam family. This flour derived by blending elephant yam, and is considered to be mostly fiber and almost no carbs. There is another version of these noodles known as ‘Tofu Shirataki Noodles’, made by blending tofu with the same Konjac flour – thereby adding protein as well as flavor.
How is Shirataki Noodle good for you?
Shirataki Noodles are Low Carb, Low Calorie, Gluten Free, Cholesterol free, sugar free, dairy free and Vegan. It is believed to enable blood sugar control as well as help cholesterol due to its fiber content. It is also believed to enable weight loss, especially with tofu shirataki noodles being high in protein, and low carb.
I have tried the Tofu shirataki noodles. The ingredients list on the back of the package read: Water, Tofu, Yam Flour and Calcium Hydroxide. One 8 oz package contained 2 servings, with a per serving nutrition of 20 calories, 3 g carbs, 2 g fiber and 1 g protein.
Where do I buy it?
Shirataki Noodles come in dry forms as well as in a wet form, packed in water, similar to tofu. You can find the dried forms in Asian stores and online. The wet form, packed in water can be found in most grocery stores. I have been able to find it at QFC and Fred Meyer(Kroger stores) here, at the tofu section of the store. It is also available in health food stores such as Whole Foods. It is not very expensive – I was able to get it for $2.50 per package.
Tofu Shirataki Noodles comes in different shapes – Spaghetti, Fettucine and Angel Hair is what I have seen at the store. I heard they have recently introduced a macaroni shape, but I am yet to see/try it yet.
How do I cook it?
If people have tried Shirataki noodles and hate it, it is likely due to the way they prepared it. These noodles have a strong fishy smell. This is due to the water they come packed in. To get rid of this, drain the noodles in a colander. Rinse in hot tap water for 2-3 minutes(don’t skimp on the rinsing). While rinsing, bring a pot of water to boil, salt it really well – similar to pasta water. Add the noodles, and let it boil for 4-5 minutes. You don’t have to worry about the noodles being over cooked, coss they never really turn mushy. If anything they remain rubbery – this is expected and the intended texture of these noodles. Drain the noodles and massage in a tbsp of olive oil.
How do I use it?
The Shirataki noodles can be used in soups, stir fries and noodle salads, just as you would use any Asian style noodle. The fettucine shaped noodles can be prepared just like pasta. The noodles don’t absorb a lot of sauce and tend to remain rubbery, but when spiced right and with the right saucers, it can be a low carbers pasta dream come true.
I have tried these noodles several times over the past couple of months, mostly in stir fries and soups. I have grown to like them. They are very filling and make a good lunch box item for me to take to work. I have also found that it keeps my blood sugar under control – apparently due to the low carb and high protein features. I will be posting my very veggie stir fry using shirataki noodles very soon.
Disclaimer: Please note that I am not in anyway endorsing a specific product through this post. This is only intended to provide my views on it. I do not receive any sort of monetary benefit for having to write this post or series.Pin It