Asian and Eastern countries know a thing or two about salt, and we’re not just talking about the sodium content of seawater. From Korea’s famous kimchi to China’s soy sauce, these salty treats are delicious and nutritious. Here is our list of seven Asian-born snacks that will make your mouth and stomach growl.
Seaweed Paper From Japan
Made out of the green algae seaweed, nori in Japanese, this salty treat is essential in many different recipes, from sushi rolls to rice balls. It’s also a great snack when eaten alone or with other foods. Nori has been known for its medicinal properties, which include controlling blood pressure and lowering cholesterol levels. Since it is rich in fiber, protein, and vitamins A and C, nori is a super healthy option. Seaweed snacks may sound odd or weird (eating weeds?) but it is really tasty once you give them a try.
Kimchi from Korea
Kimchi was introduced to Japan as kimuchi; however, it’s been given a different taste and preparation method because of the obvious differences between Japanese and Korean cuisine. Kimchi is usually made from fermenting Chinese cabbage, red pepper powder, scallions, garlic, and ginger. It is the essential side dish in every Korean meal, but it can also be eaten as a snack or appetizer. Kimchi is known to have antioxidant properties thanks to its main ingredients (cabbage and chili pepper), which help protect against cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer. Kimchi is not only delicious but extremely healthy as well!
Yuba from Japan and China
Originating in China, yuba has become one of Japan’s most famous foods because of its rich texture and heartiness. It takes one week to make yuba (soy milk skin), which is incredibly laborious. This is one of the most nutritious foods in Japan (or maybe anywhere else); it’s rich in protein, calcium, iron, and vitamin C. Yuba can be prepared sweet or savory; with soy sauce, tempura batter, tofu, or even on its own.
Tofu From China
Tofu comes from China as well (where it was first discovered) and has become one of the most popular products among vegetarians because of its nutritional properties. Tofu is made out of soybeans, which are rich in phytoestrogens that can help prevent certain types of cancer as well as symptoms associated with menopause. In Asia, tofu is usually served as a snack or appetizer, but you can have it for breakfast too.
Soya Sauce From China
Soy sauce is another product that hails from China. It’s made out of fermented soybeans and wheat, which are then ground together to create the delicious salty condiment used in many types of dishes all over Asia. Like tofu, it is also rich in phytoestrogens that can help maintain weight and prevent certain types of cancer. Soy sauce is usually used as a side dish to accompany meat, but many Asian markets sell sauces with different flavors like barbecue or teriyaki.
Soy Milk From China
The Philippines and Thailand have developed their own versions of soy milk, but the original product comes from China. Soy milk is made out of boiled and ground soybeans instead of almonds or peanuts like many other countries use. It’s extremely high in protein and calcium, making it perfect for vegetarians who want to maintain a healthy diet.
Miso from Japan
Miso is a traditional fermented food that has been used in Asian cultures for centuries. It’s made out of boiled soybeans and rice, which are then left to ferment for a period of up to 3 years! This long process gives miso its rich, deep flavor that’s extremely healthy as well. Miso can be used as a soup or dressing, and it’s rich in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It’s also known to improve liver function and lower cholesterol levels.
As you can see, these are some of the healthiest (and tastiest!) Asian salty snacks that you should try out. The next time someone asks for your food recommendations, tell them about these delicious snacks! Give it a shot and test the benefits of eating healthy salty snacks today.