Every year for my birthday, my mom makes noodles for me. One year it could be a huge pot of spaghetti; the next year it could be a Filipino style stir-fry called pancit. Whatever it may be, she keeps that tradition in the family, saying, “If you eat long noodles, you’ll have a long life.” I believe it too, especially since noodles can be paired up with so many different fruits and vegetables to make something already so tasty even more nutritious for you, hopefully giving you a longer life! Don’t forget, it is Nutrition Month, ladies, but it’s also National Noodle Month, so make sure your noodles give you oodles of healthy days.
Noodles star in so many different dishes, you can eat noodles every day of the week and not get sick of them! You can go with Vietnamese noodle soup, phở , or try the Japanese thick noodles, udon. For something creamy, have some fettucini alfredo, or on the lighter side, go for linguine with clam sauce. You can’t forget about Thai food, like pad Thai, or even the thick flat noodle dish, pad see ew. Noodles can even be a dessert, as in the Jewish noodle pudding, kugel. Generally, Asian cuisine usually uses rice or mung bean starches to make noodles, while European fare, like Italian pasta, usually incorporates egg and wheat. Any way you eat it, it’s important to mix in fruits and vegetables with the noodles to make them healthier and so much more flavorful.
As wonderful as they are, noodles aren’t always healthy for you. I know for some folks out there, the noodle of choice is the good old instant noodle pack, or even the noodle in the cup kind. I know this because I see shopping carts full of noodles coming out of the dollar store! It’s cheap, it’s quick, it’s easy, but surprise!…it’s not that healthy for you, even if you add onions or eggs to the mix. The noodles themselves are not the more worrisome ingredient of the dish; it’s usually those tiny flavor packets that contain unnecessary chemicals and loads of sodium. If you’re a Top Ramen cook, it’s just as easy to make some wholesome noodles. You can skip the packet and give the pot your own flavor. It’ll taste better, be healthier for you, and make you feel like a top chef!
Try these tips to have some noodles you’ll want to slurp up:
- Quick and easy stir fry. Your favorite veggies, like broccoli and carrots, can be chopped up and quickly stir fried in a little bit of sesame oil and low-sodium soy sauce. Try adding hoisin sauce for a deeper flavor.
- Slurp-worthy soup. Mix in vegetable broth with onions and your favorite noodle for an alternative to the instant noodle packages. For more nutrients, add spinach or baby bok choy.
- Pasta power. Pasta dishes always taste better when they’re made at home, and M.I.S.S. hooks you up with step-by-step recipes. Try M.I.S.S. GDK’s very own ziti with chicken and broccoli, Ragù alla Bolognese, fresh tomato and mushroom sauce, pesto, or even a tomato sauce with “homemade” spinach and ricotta ravioli. Skim Kim even has a yummy pesto sauce for you to try!
Wishing you a slurp-worthy month. Grab your chopsticks, your fork and spoon, or heck, even your little fingers and dig into some noodles today!
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