My husband David and I are part of a dinner group, each month we have dinner with three other couples and we alternate houses, so once every four months we host a meal at our place. We usually have a theme every month as well which means that we are all challenged to learn to cook recipes from different countries. Last month we had dinner at Chantelle and Jason’s house and the theme was Asian. Instead of the usual Chinese food that appears on these nights they served shirataki noodles which I had never even heard of let alone tried.
They served a couple of different flavors of shirataki noodles. There were vegetarian with tofu, soy sauce, garlic carrots, bean sprouts and string beans specifically for Miranda and Steve who are vegetarian but we all tried them. There were chicken shirataki noodles with diced chicken, capsicum, broccoli and cashew nuts. Beef shirataki noodles with minced beef, peas, beef stock, corn, onion and garlic and shirataki noodles with fish. So it was a bit of a shirataki noodles night but that wasn’t all, Chantelle had been super creative and served us desert shirataki noodles with a strawberry puree mixed through chopped noodles with custard and freshly made strawberry ice-cream which she made herself. This was definitely different.
Over our coffee at the end of the meal we had a bit of a laugh about how many unique dishes that Chantelle had managed to create with shirataki noodles. She shared with us that they were really easy to cook, straight out of the package a quick wash under the tap and into a pot of boiling water to heat up. They are packaged already cooked. She also told us that they are high in fiber and with no calories so they are not only fun to cook with but are good for us as well.
We chatted for a while and came up with the idea of the shirataki noodles challenge where we would have a special meal in a week’s time and we would all bring a desert and main meal dish made out of shirataki noodles and we were to be as creative as possible. Excited we all left soon after to think up our recipes for the next week which we had offered to hold at our house.
I am a very competitive spirit and I spent all week thinking up possible combinations and trying them out on David, he must have been a bit sick of shirataki noodles but he didn’t complain and the dish he was eating was always the best. I experimented with chicken, beef and pork but everything seemed a bit too ordinary for my liking so I went to the supermarket to see if there was anything there that inspired me think of something different.
I checked the meat section and I did find a meat that I had never cooked with before, Ostrich. Mmmm that sounds like it could be different, maybe with a white sauce and spring onion, shallots, brussel sprouts and shaved pumpkin. Now for my desert, the main course was taken care of. We had discovered during the week that shirataki noodles are also yummy served cold so I thought I would freeze the noodles and make an avocado ice cream sandwich with a hard chocolate layer on top certainly unusual.
When I told David, he looked at me and said that he thought I would win the challenge because my dishes were unique, I did wonder when he asked if they had to be edible as well and then returned to his paper.
The next day was Saturday and I spent the morning cleaning the house, with David taking charge of the vacuuming dusting. After lunch I chopped and cooked and prepared my dishes for the evening sure that they would be the most unusual that anyone had thought up. Finally it was six o’clock and the others started arriving. David poured everyone a drink and after a quick catch up of the week’s events we adjourned to the dining room all enthusiastic to see each other’s creations. We uncovered our concoctions and the men exchanged glances a bit unsure of what to think of the food in front of them. “Well then,” said David, “let’s eat.”