Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

House of Carbs; TRENDS from Deep-Fried Cacio E Pepe Bombs at Padella to Lasagna Fritters at Bright, Pimped-Up Pastas Are Back on the Menu. Samuel Fishwick Makes Room for More

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

House of Carbs; TRENDS from Deep-Fried Cacio E Pepe Bombs at Padella to Lasagna Fritters at Bright, Pimped-Up Pastas Are Back on the Menu. Samuel Fishwick Makes Room for More

Article excerpt

I'VE been playing around with my balls for months now," says Tim Siadatan, chef and coowner at Borough Market pasta outpost Padella, where 500 diners turn up daily to try his pici cacio e pepe -- pasta bathed in butter, cheese and cracked black pepper.

Earlier this year Siadatan hit on a trick to reward devoted fans queuing around the corner for Padella's midday opening: warming, deep-fried pasta bombs, modelled on the arancini balls he'd been snacking on during a holiday to Rome. Sixty of the little breadcrumbed globes, some stuffed with cacio e pepe, the others with tagliarini nduja and buratta, are handed out every morning in a taste test for loyalists who are grateful to be guinea pigs.

They've been a smash hit. Who wouldn't stuff their cheeks with these gooey mouthfuls? The anti-carb brigade, chiefly. Carbs developed an unhealthy reputation in the late Nineties and early Noughties, when the proliferation of no- and low-carb meal plans such as the Atkins, Dukan and South Beach diets entrenched the idea that carbs are bad.

In January the Big Carb Survey -- YouGov research commissioned by Slimming World -- found more than a third of people in the UK who have tried to lose weight adopted lowcarbohydrate diets, which remain popular, in part, thanks to celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Kim Kardashian. "Carbfusion" is endemic -- cutting the likes of pasta, potatoes and bread is still seen as an easy shortcut to weight loss.

Doctors have long poured scorn on this. "There is strong evidence that fibre, found in wholegrain versions of starchy carbs for example, is good for our health," says dietitian Sian Porter, who provides advice for NHS England's website. "While we should reduce the Continued on Page 30 Continued from Page 29 amount of free sugar in our diet, we should base our meals on starchy carbs, particularly the higher fibre varieties. …

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