Asian Grocery Shopping? Don’t Miss Out on These!

Asian Grocery Shopping? Don’t Miss Out on These!

According to Andrew Coe, a historian, Americans first traveled to China in the year 1784, bringing back with them many cultural delicacies, which later mushroomed into prominence when the Bohemians of New York starting frequenting China Towns.

In an interview, the writer of the book Chop Suey: A Cultural History of Chinese Food in the United States, the author narrates how it is also the presence of Chinese students in the United States that makes Chinese food such an elementary part of the new American culture.

It’s a no brainer, then, that you love Asian food—after all, what’s not to love about the cuisine? But do you know which ingredients you absolutely need if you’re going Asian grocery shopping? You probably have soy sauce, and maybe fish sauce, somewhere in your kitchen, but that’s not all you need! If you have no idea what to get, we’re here to tell you!

Sesame Oil, Pure

The reason sesame oil made this list and soy sauce didn’t is because soy sauce is available in most stores over town. Sesame oil, however, is a special ingredient only available at Asian food stores, and it is from there that you must buy it since there’ll be no question of getting it wrong. We suggest Kadoya’s Pure Sesame Oil, a brand that is only available in Asian stores. The oil forms the base for a ton of Asian dishes, and is something you simply cannot do without. Remember that in the Asian cuisine, there’s a trinity that sits at the base of all dishes: soy sauce, sesame oil, and vinegar.

Gochujang

Gochujang is something you’ve always wanted to be: hot. Red and viscous, the usual Westerner would regard this ingredient with fear and apprehension because it looks spicy to the third degree—and it is. A hot (duh!) red pepper paste, gochujang is an item you most definitely need in your kitchen if you’re one for quick fix Asian dinners. It goes in everything except for desserts: from soup to sauces, stews to major dishes. You can even use it as a dip—if you really like living dangerously. We suggest you keep a good stash of gochujang stored somewhere safe at your place.

Curry Powder

It’s so easy to throw a couple of nicely diced vegetables into a pot with generous chunks of meat or chicken and to let it stew for some time. For seasoning, most Asian food aficionados go with a packet of curry sauce or powder and devour the irresistible stew with steaming rice. It’s straight up comfort food for the soul.

Soba Noodles

Soba NoodlesOf course the list is incomplete without noodles, and in this case soba noodles for the true Asian inspired dish. You can find a whole range of buckwheat noodles at an Asian store, and the best part about these noodles is that they’re absolutely gluten-free. Get them as thin or as thick as you like!

Ready to Shop?

Start browsing the amazing Asian food and grocery collection at Season Food Mart, an online store that delivers groceries to California residents. Find Chinese, Japanese, and Korean ingredients, snacks, and more. Contact us for more information today.

11 Interesting Benefits Of Lentils

The health benefits of lentils include improved digestion, a healthy heartdiabetes control, cancermanagement, weight loss, prevention of anemia, and better electrolytic activity due to potassium. They are a good source of protein and are great for pregnant women. They aid in the prevention of atherosclerosis and in maintaining a healthy nervous system.

What are Lentils?

Lentils are edible pulses or seeds that belong to the legume family. These mostly consist of two halves covered in a husk. Both the seeds are lens-shaped, which is probably why they are named Lens culinaris in Latin. They are also one of the oldest known sources of food, dating back more than 9,000 years.

Lentils can be consumed with or without the husk. Prior to the invention of milling machines, they were eaten with the husk. The husk contains the highest amount of dietary fiber. After the milling process was invented, the husk or skin was removed and the dietary fiber in lentils disappeared.

The popular kinds of lentils include black lentils, red lentils, brown lentils, mung bean, yellow split peas, yellow lentils, macachiados lentils, French green lentils, black-eyed pea, kidney beans, soya beans, and many more varieties. Each country has its own group, which is more or less similar and provides the same benefits.

Lentils with a high protein content are considered an inexpensive source of protein. They are a rich source of essential amino acids like isoleucine and lysine. They are also a good source of micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals. [1]

Lentils are consumed much more often in Asian countries, particularly India. India has the largest number of vegetarians and lentils can be a substitute for meat in supplying the required protein. One very good way to have lentils is after they have sprouted because they contain methionine and cysteine. These two amino acids are very significant in muscle-building and strengthening of our body. Methionine is an essential amino acid that is supplied through the food, and cysteine is a non-essential amino acid that can then be synthesized.

9 different types of lentils on a white background

Nutritional Value of Lentils

Lentils contain the highest amount of protein originating from any plant. The amount of protein found in them is up to 35%, which is comparable to red meat, poultry, fish, and dairy products. As per the USDA, raw lentils contain carbohydrates (15-25 grams per 100 grams). [2]They are a good source of dietary fiber and also have a low amount of calories. Other nutritious components found are molybdenum, folate, tryptophan, manganeseironphosphoruscoppervitamin B1, and potassium.

Lentils are also another source of phytochemicals and phenols. Both of these organic chemicals are known to provide health benefits, but the mechanism behind their work is yet to be determined. Often, lentils and meat are compared for their effectiveness and many people vote for meat as the best source of protein. It is true that lentils do not contain all the amino acids, but they do have less fat content when compared with meat.

Health Benefits of Lentils

Lentils, cultivated ever since the advent of early agriculture, have been a part of our diet for quite long now. They provide multiple health benefits, including the following:

Muscle Generation

Our organs and muscles need a constant supply of protein for repair and growth of the body. Lentils, especially sprouted lentils, contain all the essential amino acids that are needed by our body for good muscle-building and smooth functioning of the body.

Control Diabetes

A comparative study published in the The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that in the various categories of foods, dietary fiber was found to be high in case of the legume family. [3] Lentils, along with beans and peas, belong to the legume family. Dietary fiber filled food such as lentils help in controlling blood sugar levels. Dietary fiber also slows down the rate at which food is absorbed by the blood and thus maintains the sugar level constantly.

Improve Digestion

As lentils contain high levels of dietary fiber, they improve digestion if consumed regularly. They also help in easy bowel movements, resulting in decreased constipation. Although lentils tend to cause bloating and gas, consuming soaked or sprouted lentils make it easy for you to digest them.