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What's noodles?

What'll they think of next?

You may have spotted a new kind of pasta in the dairy or produce section.

House Foods Tofu Shirataki Spaghetti is a "spaghetti shaped noodle substitute" that comes in a small, liquidfilled plastic bag. The noodles are made of water, tofu, and Konnyaku, a member of the yam family.

Why would spaghetti need a sub? As many a dedicated dieter knows, spaghetti (and most other pasta) has about 200 calories per cup. Tofu Shirataki has 40 calories per cup (one bag). To dieting pasta lovers, that's a steal.

A serving of Tofu Shirataki isn't equal to a serving of tofu, though. A cup has far less protein (2 grams) than you'd get in a 4 oz. serving of extra-firm tofu (11 grams) ... or in a cup of whole- or refined-grain spaghetti (8 grams), for that matter. And you'd get more fiber in the whole-grain pasta (6 grams) than in the Shirataki (4 grams) or the extra-firm tofu (1 gram).

What's more, Shirataki has a slightly spongier texture than pasta. It's closer to rice or cellophane noodles than to semolina. And if you're serving a crowd, it's easier (and far cheaper) to buy a 16 oz. box of whole-grain pasta for $2 than eight bags of Shirataki for $2 a pop.

But if you're looking for lower-calorie noodles, add some Shirataki Spaghetti, Angel Hair, or Fettuccine to a soup or stir-fry. Or toss them with toasted sesame oil, then a mix of minced garlic, grated ginger, vinegar, soy sauce, peanut butter, and a touch of sugar. And, of course, there's always your favorite spaghetti sauce and a dusting of Parmesan.

Now that's using your noodle.

House Foods: (714) 901-4350

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Title Annotation:RIGHT STUFF
Publication:Nutrition Action Healthletter
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2012
Words:283
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