How to make a delicious Japanese Probiotic Macro bowl!!
Mentaiko Spagetti Pasta (recipe here)
Natto (fermented soybeans) - People either love or hate natto lol! I grew up eating it so the gooey, stringy texture and smell is all delicious to me. Natto is super rich source of protein (31g per cup), fiber, calcium, vitamin K (great for bone density) and is rich in probiotics! They come pre packaged in single servings usually in a pack of 3 in the freezer section of the Japanese market. Inside is a little packet of soy sauce and mustard that you mix in to give it more flavor. I personally always opt out of the mustard and add fresh sliced green onions into it and even nori (seaweed) on top. It's seriously SOOO GOOD and you can eat with a million things! Here I used it as a topping but you can eat it with rice and miso soup, a stew, or even alone!
Hijiki ( black sea veggie)- contains essential minerals for the body as well as fiber, vitamin K, calcium, iron, and magnesium. It's amazing for your digestive health as most seaweed is because of the fiber and the iron helps boosts energy. I go to Marukai Market on Pico in Santa Monica and they make their hijiki in the kitchen and sell it in little containers already seasoned. This makes life easy because all I have to do is serve it when I'm ready to eat it. I'm sure there's a recipe for it out there if you want to make it too :)
Gobo (burdock root)- this plant root cleanses your blood, lymphatic system and skin. It has a earthy, crunchy, and in the way I'm having it gives it a sweet flavor! The root itself is super long - usually packed in cellophane in a long tube to cover all 3 feet of it. You can cook burdock root in soups or season it with other veggies to create a yummy medley too.
Umeboshi (dried plum)- an amazing alkalizing food! Usually very very sour so be prepared to cringe! My favorite kind of umeboshi are the HONEY-flavored ones. These plums usually are in the kimchi/ fermented section of the supermarket. They are antimicrobial and infection fighting and are known to help with fatigue, hangovers, and digestion. I always have one on top of rice or with my spaghetti above. I take a small bite of it and continue on eating the rest. It adds the best pop of flavor. YUM!
Kimchi - Basically fermented Napa cabbage veggie- powerful antioxidants and probiotics that helps promote healthy digestion. It's crunchy with a kick of spice and aids to rid of toxins in the body. This is a Korean dish but HEY why not mix all the things you love into one bowl right?
All the foods I listed above are SUPERFOODS that you can consume to keep your digestion and gut in check! I grew up eating all this without even knowing the health benefits until I started researching it recently haha~ but no wonder Japanese people are said to live so long : P
Anyway if you're interested in learning more about how to cook these ingredients, just google it because that's the easiest way to learn! And while we are talking about all things probiotics, you have to find a good, quality probiotic that actually MAKES it to your gut (a lot of probiotics don't survive your harsh acidic environment of your stomach or are already dead on the shelf). So do your research! I recommend Silverfern Probiotics , I take it every morning with a fiber rich breakfast.
Let me know if you have any questions on any of this. I love being able to share parts of my culture with you so I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did!