Sunday, January 9, 2011

Love It: Edamame Beans



     Edamame look like lima beans but they have a slightly sweet, mildly nutty taste, and an almost creamy texture.  They are baby soybeans and they grow in a pod, like peas.  They are featured on menus in Japanese restaurants and they are very, very good.  I discovered edamame beans last Spring, when I went vegetarian for 40-days during Lent--no poultry, beef, pork, or fish.  I was a big carnivore prior to that experience so going without required a major change in how I thought about protein.  I knew that beans were a good source of non-animal protein but I didn't (and still don't) like beans enough to eat them week after week.  I also don't like tofu, although that has improved slightly because of my Lent experience.  Where else to get protein?  Enter edamame.  



     My first experience with them was in Egyptian Edamame Stew, a recipe from EatingWell.com.  To be honest, I thought they were okay.  I didn't mind eating them but I wasn't in love with yet.  The reason?  I had undercooked them; they were still "al dente," to mix some cultural metaphors.  The first time I had properly cooked edamame was at a Japanese restaurant last fall and I was in love after I popped the first bean into my mouth.  Edamame has had a prominent part of my diet since then.  It is my go to snack after work- outs or when I have the munchies.  They are a great finger-food as the individual beans are about the size of a peanut.  Edamame is high protein, high fiber, and low in fat; I've included the nutritional information below.  If you like edamame too, I'd love to read your comments!

Nutritional Information Per 1/2-Cup Serving:
Calories: 120, Fat: 4.5g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 5mg, Carbohydrate: 8g, Fiber: 6g, Protein: 12g

6 comments:

  1. I love edamame, though I've only had them steamed in the pods with some salt (like at the japanese restaurants). I have never tried to have the beans at home. Hmmm. :)

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  2. Hi Beverly,
    Aren't edamame wonderful? I'm trying to find more main-course recipes with this great bean. When I do, I'll post about them.

    Cheers,
    Kim

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  3. Please do! For now, I live right next door to a sushi restaurant that sells them as a side order to go. Steamed to perfection. I love my new neighbourhood!

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  4. Hi Beverly,
    You live right next door to a sushi restaurant?! Lucky, lucky!

    Cheers,
    Kim

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  5. Love it! I am a big fan of edamame especially warm and salted from a Japanese restaurant. Here is a great recipe that i found when my husband was training for a triathalon. Hope you enjoy. The recipe comes from a chef who used to have a great restaurant in Raleigh called Butterflies. He then opened a different one called Zely and Ritz. Not sure if it is still aroung.

    http://www.runnersworld.com/article/1,7124,s6-242-303-504-10880-0,00.html

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  6. Hi Anonymous,
    Thanks for your comment and the link! I've bookmarked that page; it's now on the list of things to make!

    Cheers,
    Kim

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