Gastronomic Adventure with Noodles

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A quick look at the cuisines of Asia and one understands the importance of noodles, both as food and as a way of life. Popularity doesn’t really start to describe noodles. It goes beyond taste and flavor, and noodles have something to do with culture, convenience, pleasure and variety. Noodles served in bowls, are comfort food – homey and living. They entice you to twirl, slurp and savor them.

Familiar yet never the same, a staple with many faces… where did noodles come from? How have they become the most democratic of foods, with no right or wrong times to eat them? Noodles are accepted in any occasion and are the backbone of a myriad dishes.

The Chinese are on record as having eaten noodles since 3000 B.C. Legends has it that modern day noodles were first made by 13th Century German bakers who fashioned dough into symbolic shapes such as birds, swords and stars.

Etruscans, early inhabitants of Italy, made pasta as early as 400 B.C.

There are currently more than 600 noodle shapes produced word wide. Widely used throughout Asia, noodles can replace rice, potatoes, and other pastas in different recipes whether or not they’re Asian in origin.
Throughout Asia, lusty slurping of noodles is regarded more than bad manners. In Japan, for instance, participants in Zen retreats are only allowed to break their silence when they eat noodles as it is believed impossible to eat them quietly.

What an adventure one can have in noodles. They can be served piping hot or soothing cold, crunchy when fried or slithery when served up in a broth.

I love noodles, myself. I can make use of one good serving of my favorite spicy  seafood noodles while searching for a piano for kids at guitar center.