What is Edamame?
Are you looking for easy Japanese recipes? Edamame should definitely be on your radar! If you like Japanese food, you have probably heard of edamame before. Most Japanese restaurants inside as well as outside of Japan serve these tasty young soy beans. Edamame are usually eaten as a snack or side dish, and they go really well with drinks like tea, sake, and beer. This is why you always see them on the menu in izakaya (Japanese gastropubs). But these legumes are not simply a good accompaniment to your meal and drinks, they are also amazingly good for your body! Edamame pack a punch in legitimate health benefits, so it is not a bad idea to try and incorporate them in your diet a bit more often. Let’s have a look at the advantegeous qualities of edamame and a few yummy recipes that incorporate the beans!
Health Benefits of Edamame
Eating edamame beans regularly comes with numerous health benefits. Let’s have a look at some of the most important healthy properties of edamame:
- Great source of vitamins and minerals: edamame contains many valuable elements that give your body and brain a great boost. The legumes are an especially good source of folate, iron, and vitamin K and C.
- Lowers your bad cholesterol: ingesting soy protein has been shown to help lower LDL cholesterol levels, the so-called ‘bad cholesterol’ that can cause all kinds of problems like strokes and heart disease.
- A gluten-free treat: many people are sensistive or even allergic to gluten as they can cause issues for the digestive tract. It is sometimes hard to find gluten-free foods, but edamame don’t contain any gluten.
- Helps with hormone-related issues: soy has been shown to mimic the effects of estrogen, making it a very good dietary choice for women who have lower levels of estrogen such as women who are (peri)menopausal. Levels of estrogen that are too low can cause all kinds of issues such as hot flashes, mood swings, depression, joint problems, bone loss, and many other mental and physical issues, which can be alleviated by eating foods that contain soy like edamame.
- Super source for protein: this is especially good news for vegans, vegetarians, people who are healing from physical injuries, and people who are training and looking to build muscle mass, as they all have to take care to ingest enough proteins.
- Lowers your risk for various diseases and conditions: an antioxidant called isoflavones is found in copious amounts in edamame which helps lower your chance of developing cancers, osteopororis, and age-related cognitive decline. Because of their high folate levels, the beans also help stave off depression as a lack of folate can cause the condition. Overall inflammation levels are also reduced when you eat enough soy, which helps with alleviating many (potential) issues.
How to Use Edamame
There are various ways to incorporate more edamame in your diet. Of course, you can simply eat them as they are, just pop some frozen unpeeled edamame in a bowl the microwave, add some salt, and your snack is ready to go. They are a great go-to snack for when you’re peckish but want to try to steer clear of more unhealthy choices like crisps or sugary snacks. You can also add them to smoothies or enjoy them in edamame (soy)milk for some extra flavor and nutritional value. Another way to have edamame is in your pasta. Similar to green peas, adding edamame to virtually any pasta dish gives it an extra bite with a creamy flavor.
Easy Japanese Recipes Edamame
So now let’s see some other ways to cook with edamame and check out these amazing easy and healthy recipes!
- Edamame and Shibazuke Pickles Rice Ball
- Japanese-Style Edamame & Herb Butter Pull-Apart Bread
- Edamame (Zunda) Smoothie