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Monthly Archives: August 2008

  • Weight Loss Series: Six Asian Foods for a Skinnier, Healthier You

     Thumbnail image for asianwoman2.jpgYou've heard that French women don't get fat, but if you think about it, neither do most Asian women and men. What is their secret? In this special weight-loss series, we will outline the six Asian foods that help you lose weight and feel great about yourself. We have chosen these Asian foods because they are healthy, tasty, economical, and easy to prepare-really!
    Read on to discover the Asian food entrees, beverages and desserts (that's right, desserts) that directly contribute to a more vibrant, energetic, and slender you! Without further ado, our first weight-loss Asian food....

    Thumbnail image for noodles.jpg 1) Shirataki Noodles. The star of our Asian food weight loss series, these Asian noodles pack an amazing amount of health benefits. Unlike wheat pasta, the low carb, low calorie Shirataki noodles are composed almost completely of fiber. Fiber rich foods like Shirataki noodles absorb water, which means, in addition to major health benefits, you feel more full and satisfied than you would from eating other craze diet foods.  Don't stick to cabbage and celery stalks and feel famished all day long!  Our Shirataki noodles leave you feeling completely satiated, all while packing amazing health benefits. Did we mention they are ready in mere minutes?

           Shirataki Noodles Health Benefits

    • Decreased blood cholesterol levels
    • Possible reduced risk of heart disease
    • May reduce risk of some types of cancer
    • May reduce risk of coronary heart disease


    NOTE: Shirataki noodles can be an acquired taste. Eat in small quantities to adjust to the new texture, and consider adding yummy garlic, tofu, spinach or soy sauce to spice up the flavor.
    If you take nothing else from this weight-loss series (although we certainly hope you will), consider substituting your typical pasta for Shirataki noodles one or two times a week. Your body will love you!

    5 More Great Weight Loss Asian Foods after the jump, so read on....



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  • Introducing Japanese Candy, Class of 2008 (Pocky Awarded "Most Likely to be Delicious")

    If we gathered all the Japanese candy out there and put them in high school, Pocky would be crowned prom king... Continue Reading
  • Japanese Bread Makes a Tasty Pastry

    Although Japan is best known as the land of sushi, rice, and tea, Japanese bread is quite popular as well... Continue Reading
  • Introduce your Kids to Asian Food with Fun Chop

    fun chop.jpg  Introduce your kids to delicious Asian food early in life when you purchase them a Fun Chop. These colorful rubber "clips" function as training wheels for chopsticks, adding extra grip and control for ease of use. Created by a father who wanted to help his children learn to use chopsticks, they are perfectly based on youngsters' needs. By buying your kids Fun Chops, you set them up for a yummy life of easily feasting on Asian food. In fact, with Fun Chop they will be eating sushi, miso, noodles and more in no time!

     Since picking up new skills is easier for children, it pays to get your children started on Fun Chop early. Fun Chop is suitable for children over the age of three, so basically if they can dress themselves (however oddly) they can use chopsticks with Fun Chop. Teaching them to use chopsticks early will help them cultivate a taste for delicious Asian food early, and save them the trouble and embarrassment of having to learn when they are older. Prepare your child for a life of culture, travel and cuisine with Fun Chop!

     Available in a variety of colors, these playful little chopstick helpers are a friendly addition to your Asian food utensils. Help your child develop a taste for Asian food early in life with a little help from Fun Chop (hint, they work for adults too!)

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  • Sushi Round Up - What's Your Favorite Fish?

    Centuries ago, someone (surely a genius) found out that salted fish lasts longer if it's placed in rice. Behold the birth of sushi! Continue Reading
  • Beijing Olympics Challenge: Make 3 Record-Breaking Meals

    It's difficult to watch the Beijing Olympics without feeling the urge to compete. Instead of pole-vaulting onto the couch, aspiring chefs... Continue Reading
  • How to tell the difference between sushi and sashimi

    If you frequent sushi bars, one day you might come across a sushi snob. Such a person will bring their own designer chopsticks... Continue Reading
  • Create an Olympic Torch and other Origami Paper Crafts

    How to Create Your Own Beijing Olympic Torch and Other Origami Paper Crafts



    Welcome to the AFG Olympics Party Planning series! If you have already checked out our amazing Beijing Olympics party platters and taken the Wasabi Challenge, its time to get creative with some Olympics crafts. Below, learn how to make your very own Beijing Olympics torch, as well as other cool origami paper crafts such as plum blossoms and pandas. Let's get started!

                                      What you'll need for your Olympic torch



    colored cardstock- 12x12 size

    Silver cardstock- 8.5 x 11

    Swirl paper punch

    Glue gun

    Spray adhesive glue

    Sealant - Any all purpose sealer- safe for paper that dries

    Red sharpie



    Yellow tissue paper- 1 sheet (cut in half)

    Red tissue paper- 1 sheet (cut in half)


    1. Check
      out the pictures of the real Beijing Olympics torch online. It will help you get a
      sense for your creation.  The
      example shown above has a little artistic creative license taken to suit
      the needs of the crafter and supplies at hand.
    2. Roll
      the sides of the burgundy cardstock up, corner to corner so that they meet
      in the center, tightly rolled to form the torch base.  Hold there for a moment to get the paper
      to hold the shape and reach for your glue gun.
    3. You'll
      have to let go and the rolls and apply a dab of glue to one of the corners
      of the cardstock and re-roll.  Hold
      the roll until the glue and hardens and apply a line of glue to the edge
      of the roll and press to the torch so that the roll holds it's shape.
      Repeat for the other side.
    4. Now
      that you have the main torch shape, take your scissors and cut in a
      rounded arc the top pointed end of the torch to give the right shape at
      the top.
    5. Do the
      same for the bottom pointed end of the torch, rounding it out.
    6. Next,
      take the swirl punch and begin punching out swirls from the silver
      cardstock.  Punch a lot.
    7. In
      small sections, of no more than 5 inches in length and no more than the
      width of the swirls, spray the adhesive glue on the side of the torch.
      Begin placing the punched out silver swirls on the torch, pressing gently
      to adhere them.  Watch your finger
      though, spray glue is very tacky and often will pick up anything else
      around you.  So don't drop it on the
      carpet or you'll have a fuzzy torch.
    8. Continue
      doing this until you are satisfied with the number of silver swirls on
      your torch.  Depending on your
      patience level, you may elect to cover it from the halfway point to the
      top, like the real torch, or like I did and elect to cover the top third
    9. Once
      all the swirls are in place, grab your sealant and lightly spray or brush
      it on over the swirls.  Only place
      sealant on the section of the torch with the swirls. If you place the
      sealant on too heavily it might saturate the cardstock which will cause it
      to warp while drying or the paper colors to bleed.
    10. While
      the sealant is drying, construct the emblem.  I recommend using a very close up
      picture online to copy the figure and writing from.  Cut an oval from the silver cardstock of
      3 inches in width and 5 inches in height. 
    11. Trace
      the figure, script (Beijing 2008) and the rings on with pencil
    12. Fill
      the pencil in with red sharpie, filling in the red spaces around the
      silver figure.
    13. If the
      sealant has dried, using a hot glue gun, apply glue lightly to the back of
      the oval and adhere it in place on the front of the torch.  Hold it in place until the glue dries.
    14. Now we
      create the fire! Take one of the half sheets and of yellow tissue paper
      and same for the red.  Place the
      yellow on top of the red, lengthwise, while the yellow lies
    15. Pinch
      the center of the yellow towards you and start gathering and crumpling it
      up.  Twist the bottom of your gather
      together so that it will fit inside one of the two cavities in the torch.
    16. Stuff
      one of the bunches of "flames" into the torch, repeat for remaining tissue
      paper and other torch cavity.


    That's it!

    Additional Resources for Fun Origami Paper Crafts

    If you're in the crafty mood after completing your Beijing Olympics Torch craft, continue the festivities with other fun origami paper crafts! Here are some links to Asian origami paper crafts like pandas, plum blossoms, and more. Have fun!

    origami.jpgWant to continue with your Beijing Olympics decor? Learn how to make a flags of world craft here.

    How does your origami paper garden grow? Learn how to make a rose, hydrangea, water lily, camellia, morning glory, iris and plum tree here.




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