Wagamama - Eating Out the Healthy Way

The last month or so I've been following a diet from my nutritionist which has involved keeping track of my calories and macros in order to support my training, so I am able to get the most out of my workouts and athletics training. As I've been learning about macros more in depth, I've stuck to a more basic diet, lots of chicken I'll admit, in order to find out what works for my body. However it's not been without struggle, and yes I've had the odd time off plan, I'm only human, but I never have and never will be super strict with my food, it's not a way of life for me. I love good food and the social aspect of eating out, so when I finally visited Wagamama (I know I'm late on the band wagon) I was so happy to find somewhere I can eat without messing up my healthy eating and macros. 

After a 4am start, I walked into the Trafford Centre late Wednesday night praying to find a healthy restaurant as I was not prepared to cook a decent meal. Traipsing past TGI Fridays and Coast to Coast, I really wasn't hopeful, but just a few steps forward was my saving grace. I've been told by so many people how good Wagamama is, however Japanese food never really appealed to me and when I go out I like to go for something big and greasy. However, it was by far the busiest restaurant around and being on a bit of a health kick, I thought noodles and vegetables might be a better idea than ribs. I was so right. 

Wagamama hit the UK in 1992 in London and since has expanding nationwide, bringing a little bit of Japan to the streets of England. They work off the philosophy of 'kaizen' meaning 'good change' and the restaurant sure gives off that simple, relaxed vibe. They keep the tables small and clear in order to fit as many people as possible, without it feeling overcrowded and dense and everything has a sense of being very clean, just what you want in a food environment. It only took a few minutes to decide what to have, not because there wasn't enough choice, but because I had ramen on the brain, it's impossible to go to a Japanese restaurant and not try the ramen, it's what makes or breaks it. 

Simon ordered the Tonkatsu, pork belly coated in panko breadcrumbs, sweet soy marinade and white rice, I went for the chicken ramen, and we took the duck gyoza and steamed pork belly buns as sides. The gyoza were fried dumplings filled with duck, a little naughty treat that was definitely worth being a little lenient with my diet for. And the pork buns were soft, well marinated and the pork flaked away in your mouth, absolute perfection. Ramen is a traditional Japanese dish consisting of wheat noodles, a meat or fish based broth, meat and vegetables and is a light but flavoursome dish, making it a great option if you don't want to splurge when eating out. Often I find there is too much going on with some ramen dishes, but this one had the balance just right, plenty of meat and the broth had a great aroma. 

I really couldn't fault the food, service and overall look of the restaurant, and I can finally say i've been to Wagamama and will be going back in no time to try something new. And you know the best thing about it? Their meals were already on My Fitness Pal...


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