Sunday, September 8, 2013

Pasta and a Walk: Shirataki noodles

I am happy to share, I was going to go for a walk today all on my own-no outside motivation!!

The plan was around lunch time when the rain stopped. I was changed, all ready, and decided to text DH and ask if he wanted to walk with me when he got home. If I didn't hear from him I was just going to go. As I was trying out an email to him just in case that got through first, he texted back! I was shocked. Usually he doesn't have his cell with him, so a response right away is like surprise gift. 

So I decided to wait for him to come home. As it turns out, just as I would have set out, it started to pour rain again. He saved me from the rain, aw. It turned out to be much nicer later on, no clouds in the sky, beautiful sunset, cooler temperature, most of the rain had dried up or moved to pool in the channels to the storm drains (which always seem to be backed up). I just used a better map and our usual walk is about 3 miles. Yet again, I forgot to check the time to see how long it took us. Although, we do have to stop somewhere between 5 and 8 times for road crossings or gate entrances, which may slow it down as we wait for a chance to cross. 

Dinner request was pasta and sauce. I only allowed it because I had just bought some Shirataki noodles to try out. Pasta just has too many carbs and I have successfully learned to live without it. I have been reading about these non-carb noodles for years and only just found them now. So I knew they had to be rinsed, rinsed, and rinsed again. The smell of the bag as pretty pungent, it is made from mushrooms and sometimes tofu, after all. I boiled for about 3 minutes and then pulled the extremely long noodles into bunches and pulled some into shorter lengths for easy eating. I boiled some regular wheat pasta for DH in case he couldn't eat the new ones. I actually put the wheat pasta in first, mixed it a bit so it wouldn't get clumpy and then used my handy dandy wires skimmer to hold the shirataki noodles in the boiling water above it. Mine happens to be "Chinese Style" as opposed to heavy duty all metal. Mine is also now an heirloom and I am honestly surprised it has lasted through so much use. Back to the noodles, I strained and rinsed and strained and rinsed again, just in case. This ended up cooling the noodles down too much but I wanted to make sure there wasn't any residual nastiness that DH might pick up on. Or me, but I am a bit more receptive to odd smells and textures and flavors. 
This is half the package, or one serving. Might need to double or triple for that "plate of pasta."

I thought the noodles were just fine, like ramen. DH agreed that it wasn't bad. Not the best texture for pasta sauce, but could be great for soup, maybe fried up for chili, cold pasta salad, or just as a side. I am already envisioning my favorite sauce, ricotta cheese (which is actually whey). Yum! 

Here is how the noodles stack up against our wheat pasta. Shira is 113g serving size, 4g of carbs, 3g of fiber, 15 cals. Wheat is 56g serving size, 41g of carbs, 5g of fiber, 210 cals. 
That compares as 113 vs 56 serving size. 4g vs 41g carbs. 3g vs 5 gs fiber, and 15 calories vs 210.
Or double that for the the Shira portion size: pasta is 82 grams of carbs, 10g fiber, 420 cals. 

Wow! That is of course, if I read the package right. Still, this is going to be a new, if far more pricey than pasta, staple. And it was kinda pricey. I think one bag was $2-$3 maybe where as pasta is, what? $1 for a ton of servings? Eh, we are trying to lose weight, not feed an army before it does a triathlon. We can afford, thankfully, to spend a bit more to eat a bit more that amounts to quite a bit less. Does that make sense? 

Now, we might need to double or triple the amount of Shira noodles to get that "full" feeling if we are eating "pasta" for dinner, as I said earlier. We always have a veggie along with dinner. The more carbs, the more free veggies, like salad. So since tonight was pasta, I made a huge salad for both of us, taking up the whole plate on each of our plates. The result was full bellies but now I need to buy some more salad, which is no big deal. I will just grab it for less than $1 at my favorite veggie warehouse just down the street. 

Our protein tonight was lean ground beef. You can see it peaking out of the corner of of my seasonal plate picture. This was a current picture, by the way, I just keep the those plates out because they are all dishwasher, microwave, ovens-safe. OVEN SAFE! I love these plates. I can cook on one plate, transfer half the meal to another plate, and boom, we are done. Less dishes, less cleanup. Just have to let the cooking plate cool off. Or put it on a cork pad to save the table from the heat. If it's just me for dinner, I either throw the stuff in the oven to bake while I shower after the gym, then pull it out to cool while I do my hair or whatnot or I eat right off it. So far no burns and its been a few years. 
So, if you have tried Shirataki noodles, or something similar, let me know. Any tips or tricks are greatly appreciated. This is supposed vegan friendly and gluten free. This is a go for my family. Hope it is for yours as well! 

(all pictures are mine except for the wire skimmer and yoga cook, via google)

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