All About Asian Food

June 2008 Archives

From spicy curry to savory soup dumplings, Asian cuisine is amazing. Hard to imagine, but out of all the spectacular Asian dishes out there, we managed to select a few favorites. The number 10 slot in our weekly countdown goes to Shirataki noodles for being utterly delicious, easy to prepare, and yes, even a tad healthy.

Shirataki Mania

Shirataki noodles are translucent, low-carb noodles derived from a yam-like tuber known as Konjac. Although they don't have a discernible taste, they absorb whatever you throw into the pot. Slather these babies in soy sauce, garlic, or sesame oil. Some people might describe Shirataki noodles as "rubbery," but with a little love, some tofu, and a long boiling time, they'll arrive to your plate super soft and scrumptious.

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Success with Shirataki

Shirataki noodles come packaged in liquid and are ready to eat right out of the package. Just pour the noodles into a colander and rinse them under hot water. If you are cooking with spaghetti Shirataki noodles, cut them down first using kitchen shears. Then, boil for about one minute and add some flavor. Serve with vegetables, tofu, or beans to make the dish more filling.

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Shirataki Noodles, the New Diet Do

These noodles are not only versatile, they are a diet superfood. If you ever wondered how to incorporate noodles into your strict low-carb diet, try these. They contain glucomannan, a water-soluble dietary fiber found in plants. Besides weight loss, eating a high-fiber diet is thought to have many health benefits, including reducing the risk of heart disease and cancer. Glucomannan is also available in supplement form.

shirataki noodles 3.jpgIf you have a Shirataki recipe you'd like to share or any tips, please leave a comment. Don't forget to check back and see number nine in our countdown next week! You can find Shirataki noodles, recipes, and other Asian noodles at 

wasabi paste.jpgIf you're a sushi fan, chances are you're in love with that notorious neon-green paste known as Wasabi. Half the fun of going out for sushi is watching friends' reactions when they try this popular Asian condiment for the first time. "It's Wasabi," you exclaim to the sashami neophytes at the table. You convince them to try it and laugh as they experience the sinus-clearing wonder of Wasabi.

We hate to disappoint you but that fiery putty most likely wasn't the real Wasabi. All this time, you've been flavoring your fish with a combination of horseradish, spicy mustard, and food coloring. Yes, you were duped by Wasabi's evil doppelganger, Japanese horseradish. Once you understand the origin of authentic Wasabi, you'll see why the server brought an impostor to your table.

Wasabi Japonica is generally sold in the form of a root and it quickly loses flavor if it's exposed to air. This is thewasabi root.jpg main reason that the tuber is not typically sold in a tube. It costs about $10 for one little root, so a quick look at the price tag will tell you if it's real Wasabi or not. But why is authentic Wasabi so expensive?

This cute root has a list of demands that rival an A-list celebrities'. It requires a cool, damp climate and although it can grow in the ground, it prefers a luxurious gravel bed. Clean water is a must and the temperature must be mild, not the least bit hot for Wasabi's survival. Wasabi grows successfully in few areas, namely Japan and the Pacific Northwest.

wasabi peas.jpgThe flavor of Wasabi Japonica is revered throughout Japan and the rest of the world. If the real stuff shows up at your table the next time you're at a sushi bar, consider yourself lucky. If not, perhaps you could find true Wasabi at your local Asian food mart and experiment with some new cooking techniques. Or get your fix with these addictive Wasabi Peas. Be warned: this is one condiment that will make you cry! To search for Wasabi-flavored products shop

Introducing Our New Blog

Welcome to Asian Food Grocer's new blog! Take a journey with us as we explore recipes and provide easy-to-follow instructions on how to roll sushi or make a mean Miso soup. If you ever wondered about the origin of Wasabi, then this is the blog for you.

This is the place where Pocky lovers can discuss if Milk Pocky is better than Men's Pocky. Or find the answer to the all-important question, where's the women's Pocky? We'll feature fun blogs, informative how tos, and tips for navigating the Asian grocery store.

At, we take two things very seriously - Asian food and customer service. We are always open to new ideas and suggestions on how to improve our business. Please contact us if you have a question, comment, or an age-old family recipe you'd like to share. And if you have a blog idea, we'd like to hear that too! We love hearing from fellow foodies, so please don't be afraid to comment.

Check back later and learn more about Asian cuisine and culture. Or to satisfy your most recent craving, shop for Asian food now.