Many college students and young adults live on a diet of ramen noodle soup. The cheap price of a pack of instant noodles and complete lack of skill required to make ramen helped rise it to the ranks of dietary staple for the young and financially challenged. The high-starch, highly processed nature of ramen noodles mean they aren't something you should be eating if you want to make it past your dorm room days to a happy healthy old age.
Fortunately, there is a low carb and even paleo-friendly alternative. You simple use spiral cut zucchini in place of the starchy, white flour noodles. Spiral cut zucchini is gaining popularity as a pasta and noodle alternative and are often called ZOODLES by its many fans. You make the zucchini in to a noodle shape by using either a julienne peeler, a Veggetti tool or a spiral food slicer.
A few of the tools you can use to create zoodles
Once you have the "zoodles" made, you need to deep fry them until they are lightly browned and crunchy. After a few minutes on a paper towel to drain off any excess cooking oil, you simply add your ramen-ized zucchini in to a bowl a bone broth or some bullion mix. Zoodles can also be made ahead and frozen to get it near the instant status of traditional ramen noodles.
Ramen Zoodle Soup
- Prepare a medium zucchini (around 196g) in to zoodles. Just wash and cut off the ends. No peeling necessary.
- Use a deep fryer and cook the zoodles in lard, peanut oil or palm oil according to manufacturer instructions or at 350-400 degrees. Be very careful that the oil does not foam out over the top of the frier. Zucchini contains a lot of moisture so proceed with caution. Once the zucchini zoodles rises from the bottom of the frier basket and begin to look brown on the edges, use a slotted spoon to turn the mass of zoodles over. Continue frying until golden brown.
- As the zoodles drain, heat 1 1/2 cups of bone broth (you can also add 1 tbsp of organic instant chicken bullion powder to 1 1/2 cups of boiling water if you don't have bone broth available.)
- Add the crispy zoodles to the broth and top with chopped chives or green onions and enjoy.
- For a more substantial soup, add mushrooms, cauliflower, white meat chicken or peas. This recipe is very flexible so don't be afraid to experiment.
NOTE: If you do not have a deep fryer, a cast iron pan with high walls can also be used.
A medium raw zucchini cut in to zoodles (left) and the result after deep frying.
Spices are more than just tasty ways to enhance your food. They can be powerful remedies that provide inexpensive relief without harmful side-effects. One of the most versatile spices is turmeric. It has been used for thousands of years to treat many illnesses.
Recent studies show that turmeric can treat joint pain and even protect the brain from Alzheimer's Disease. If you decide to try a turmeric supplement. pre-made capsules can be purchased at most major health food stores. If you purchase capsules, make sure the formula includes piperine (a black pepper component) to increase the bioavailability.
You also have the option to make your own capsules and include other helpful spices like ginger and cinnamon, known for their anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. The recipe below is formulated to fill size 00 gel caps, available from most health food stores or online.
We jokingly call the turmeric pills "Melange" after the spice from the sci-fi cult classic "Dune", but this formula wont allow you to fold space. It is just a great way to naturally relieve arthritis and joint pain. Let the spice flow!
Melange (Turmeric Capsules)
1/2 cup organic turmeric
1/4 cup ground black pepper
1 Tbsp maca root powder*
1 Tbsp ceylon cinnamon
1 Tbsp ginger root
1 Tbsp cayenne pepper
Mix ingredients well and load in to 00 gel caps. This can be done by hand or by using a capsule filler. With the capsule filler, you will not need to take as many capsules to feel the effects because it tamps down more ingredients in to each pill. You may want to wear gloves regardless of the method. Turmeric will stain your fingers yellow.
Make 166 00-sized capsules
Dosage: Take 1-3 pills per day with a meal. You should notice a reduction in joint pain within 3 days. Adjust dosage depending on your needs.
WARNING: While these ingredients are "just spices", they do have therapeutic effects and can interact with prescription and over-the-counter medications. Be sure to discuss incorporating turmeric in to your supplement regime with your doctor.