Kitchen Diva

The Healthy Culinary Attributes of Peanuts

Peanut ginger one pan pasta with vegetables and lime
Angela Shelf Medearis, May 2017

Dry-roasted peanuts are an excellent source of magnesium, niacin and potassium. They’re also a good source of zinc, copper, thiamine and phosphorus, are high in fiber and contain iron, pantothenic acid and vitamin B-6. Peanuts are high in fat — mostly unsaturated fat, which is a healthier choice than the saturated fat found in meat.

A half-ounce of peanuts or tree nuts or a tablespoon of peanut butter counts as the equivalent to 1 ounce from the protein group. Most older children and adults need approximately 4 to 6.5 ounces from this food group each day. It’s also a good source of protein for children who don’t like to eat meat.

Try my recipe for Asian-style peanut noodles for a new way to incorporate peanuts into your diet.

Asian-Style Peanut Noodles

1 pound whole wheat spaghetti

2 teaspoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger (or 1 teaspoon ground ginger)

1/4 cup smooth peanut butter

3/4 cup milk (whole, 2 percent, skim or soy are all fine), divided

1 (12-ounce) package broccoli slaw

1 cup frozen green peas

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Chopped roasted peanuts,

for garnish (optional)

Step 1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Be sure to reserve at least 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid when you drain it.

Step 2. Meanwhile, heat a large saute pan over medium heat and add olive oil. Add garlic and fresh ginger, and saute for 30 seconds.

Step 3. Add peanut butter and 1/2 cup of the milk; stir well to combine and melt the peanut butter.

Step 4. Add broccoli slaw and stir to get it well-coated. Reduce the heat to low and let simmer for 3-4 minutes, until broccoli slaw is softened.

Step 5. Add frozen peas and soy sauce, salt, pepper, cayenne and the remaining 1/4 cup milk. Stir well to combine. Let simmer for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Step 6. Add the spaghetti to the pan once it’s cooked, along with 1/4 cup of reserved cooking water to loosen the mixture and help the sauce adhere to the noodles, more as needed. Serve warm or cold with a wedge of lime.


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