Use your noodle!

There are so many varieties of noodle that are now widely available in supermarkets it can be difficult to know the difference. Most noodles come from Asia - mainly Japan, China and Thailand and they are made from different ingredients such as wheat, rice, buckwheat and mung beans. Each one has its own unique taste and texture and therefore lend themselves to particular recipes. Most noodles are sold dried and some are portioned into “nests” – use one per person.

Glass noodles

Also known as bean thread and cellophane noodles, these very fine, translucent noodles need to be soaked in hot water before adding to dishes such as salads, spring rolls and stir-fries. They are made from mung beans.

Rice Noodles

Used widely in Thailand, Singapore and Sri Lanka, these fine, delicate noodles are made from rice flour and just need soaking in hot water before using. They come in different thicknesses – the flat, wide ribbon type is used in Pad Thai. Rice noodles are gluten-free.

Rice Vermicelli

Very fine rice noodles, similar in appearance to glass noodles but made with rice flour. They should be briefly soaked before use. Add to soups, salads, Vietnamese wrappers. Or if you prefer a crispy noodle they puff up beautifully when deep fried. It takes a matter of seconds! Use as a garnish for Thai food.

Ramen

Bouncy, thick, yellow noodles made from wheat flour and eggs. As the name suggests, they are used in a Japanese broth flavoured with soy sauce, miso and topped with sliced pork, egg, seaweed and spring onions. But the noodle itself originates from China!

Udon

Japanese noodles made from wheat flour and water. Often sold fresh, these have a nice chewy texture and are traditionally served as a noodle soup with vegetables, mirin and soy sauce.

Soba

A thin brown noodle hailing from Japan, these are made with buckwheat flour and are nutty in taste. It can be served in hot and cold dishes.

Egg Noodles

Versatile yellow noodles from China which are used in popular dishes such as chow mein. Made from wheat flour and eggs, they have a rich taste and stretchy texture, and come in various thicknesses.

We have oodles of noodle recipes. Here’s just a few, give them a try!