Posts tagged legumes


Spicy Mexican Salad

Spicy Mexican SaladSubmitted by: Brenda Davis, RD,
and Vesanto Melina, MS, RD
Yield: 4 – 2 cup servings

Ingredients: Salad

  • 3 Tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 Ripe avocados, finely diced
  • 2 cups Fresh or frozen (thawed) corn kernels
  • 2 Ribs celery, diced
  • 1 Large orange, red, or yellow pepper cut into matchsticks
  • 1 cup Sprouted Lentils* or cooked black beans
  • 1 cup Finely chopped, fresh cilantro or parsley, packed
  • 3 Green onions, sliced

Ingredients: Mexican Dressing

  • ¼ cup Freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp Flaxseed oil
  • 2 Tbsp Nama Shoyu (soy sauce) or tamari
  • 1 Tbsp Liquid Sweetener (such as maple or agave syrup)
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp Minced red or green chili
  • ½ tsp Ground cumin

Directions

  1. To make the salad, combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. To make the dressing, combine all ingredients in a jar with a lid or blender. Close the jar and shake well or process until well combined.
  3. To serve, add the dressing to the salad and toss until evenly distributed. Serve at once or chill for up to 2 hours.

To Sprout Lentils

  • Makes 3-4 cups sprouts
  • ½ cup Dried green or brown lentils
  • 2 cups Water

Directions

  1. Place the lentils in a sprouting jar and cover them with the water. Put a sprouting lid on the jar or cover it with piece of mesh or cheesecloth secured with a wide elastic band. Let stand at room temperature for 12 to 24 hours. Drain and rinse the lentils thoroughly with cool water.
  2. Place the jar at a 45-degree angle over a saucer (to collect any water that may run off) or in a dish rack. Cover the jar with a tea towel or place the jar away from direct sunlight so the sprouts can grow in the dark.
  3. Rinse and drain the lentils 2 or 3 times a day for 3 to 5 days until a short tail is visible. Store the well drained sprouts in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Authors Notes

Raw vegan diets are hot! They help us to shed excess body weight and they provide an army of protective antioxidants, vitamins and other phytochemicals. Here are a few examples of nutritional benefits, based on the ingredients in the tasty recipe that follows:

  • Corn, orange sweet peppers, and parsley contain the carotenoids zeaxanthin and lutein that help our eyes to filter out harmful light and protect us against macular degeneration and vision loss that can occur as we age.
  • Avocadoes, corn, and yellow sweet peppers contain alpha-carotene, a powerful antioxidant that slows the growth of cancer cells.
  • Tomatoes and red peppers contain lycopene, which gives a red colour protects against cancers of the digestive tract, lungs, prostate, bladder, cervix, and pancreas.
  • Celery, cilantro and parsley contains the flavonoid apigenin, a potent antioxidant that seems to be protective against leukemia and ovarian cancer. Apigenin also has anti-inflammatory activity.
  • Legumes, such as lentils or black beans support our immune system, lower cholesterol levels, decrease blood lipids, lower cancer risks, and lower blood glucose response. The saponins present may also inhibit dental caries,
  • Garlic contains the phytochemical allicin which protects garlic from pests (insects and microorganisms) and us from harmful bacterial. Green onions contain related compounds.
  • Limes with the protective phytochemicals eriodictyol and hesperetin, can defend cells against oxidative injury. In addition, limonen increases the levels of liver enzymes that can help our body to detoxify potential cancer-causing substances.
  • Olive oil contains phytosterols that help to reduce cholesterol absorption and total and LDL cholesterol.
  • Chili peppers contain capsaicin with pain relieving and anti-inflammatory action.
  • Cumin has antioxidant activity due to the presence of the phytochemical ferulic acid.

This recipe for a full meal salad can be 100 percent raw or mainly raw, depending on your choice of sprouted lentils or cooked black beans

Nutritionals (2 cups)

Calories: 479; Total Fat: 31 g; Saturated Fat: 4 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 555 mg; Carbohydrates: 48 g; Fiber: 13 g; Sugar: 13 g; Protein: 9 g; Vitamin A: 64% DV; Vitamin C: 153% DV; Calcium: 6% DV; Iron: 17% DV

Source: “Becoming Raw” by Registered Dietitians Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina.


Festive Dips for All Occasions

Recipes by: Debbie Petitpain, MS, RD, LD and Nina Crowley, MS, RD, LD

Need a quick dish to celebrate the entrance of 2017? Instead of rushing out to see what is available in the stores, try making the following quick and tasty bean dip recipes. These recipes were submitted jointly by Debbie Petitpain, MS, RD, LD, and Nina Crowley, MS, RD, LD to a recent VN DPG recipe contest.

White Bean Dip with Rosemary

Black Bean Salsa


Got Enough Protein?

No matter how prolific the evidence nor how well presented our website, there will always be someone who asks, “Can a vegetarian diet provide enough?” Enough might mean enough protein, enough variety, enough nutrients, enough of whatever the questioner fears might be lacking.

It’s not surprising that this question continues to be asked. The societal belief that a well-balanced diet must include meat, fish, poultry and dairy foods is deeply ingrained and has some roots in the association of these foods with an individual’s ability to procure them, that is, one’s personal affluence. During World Wars I and II, many foodstuffs were rationed including butter, sugar, meat, and coffee. Transportation of food was limited by fuel rationing and so people began to cultivate their own gardens and raise their own chickens. Thus, Victory Gardens appeared where flowers once grew or cars once parked. The ‘Eat locally’ movement had begun but with a slightly different intent than today’s locavores.

Naturally, with the rationing came a sense of deprivation that persisted until the end of the wars and the relative improvement of choices in the market. As people were able to add some of the former luxuries back into their regular diets, it wasn’t long before these luxuries became daily staples.

It’s worth noting here that as countries around the world become increasingly more developed and affluent, their diets also change to include the very luxuries mentioned above; fat, sugar, meat and another, alcohol. Patterns of disease in those countries parallel the dietary changes as both become more like disease and diets seen in Western countries.

So the question remains, “Does a vegetarian diet provide enough?”

Once again my dear photographer friend, who also happens to be a midwife, comes to the rescue with a delightful visual aid.

Take a look at the platter of food she compiled for her pregnant clients; its beauty belies its nutrient value. Not only colorful but also displaying the recommended plate proportions of protein, vegetables and fruits, this meal offers enough for an individual to meet nutrient needs as well as support good health. All the foods are rich in vitamins and minerals, phytochemicals and fiber while being relatively low in calories and fat as well as being free of simple sugars and cholesterol. These characteristics help to maintain appropriate weight and reduce blood pressure as well as risks for heart disease and diabetes.

White lima beans are this meal’s primary source of protein, with one cup providing 16 grams or about 30 percent of an adult woman’s daily requirement. The limas’ 30 grams of fiber meet the daily recommendation for adults and do a great job of modulating blood sugar, providing satiety and maintaining intestinal health. Besides being rich in potassium, white lima beans pack iron to the tune of 60 percent of the adult recommended daily intake. There are 140 calories in one cup.

Sugar snap peas, which are actually a hybrid of English peas and snow peas, are completely edible. One cup has barely 30 calories but more than 60 percent of recommended vitamin C intake. This is a vitamin K rich vegetable, which is why it is so aptly included in the lunch for pregnant women.

The much-maligned watermelon also does its share to support good health by providing vitamins B6, C and K, plus potassium and lycopene, a beneficial phytochemical found only in red-pigmented fruits and vegetables. One cup has about 50 calories, a trace of protein but no fat or cholesterol. What is fascinating about the protein is that it is comprised of amino acids that can metabolize to nitric oxide, a substance that helps to maintain artery function and thus improve blood pressure.

Without examining the familiar nutrient gifts of the mixed greens and herb salad, you can see that a lunch comprised of what we have just discussed can be not only quite filling but also nutrient dense, providing almost a third of a woman’s daily protein needs, wrapped in a wide variety of vitamins and minerals as well as including enough fiber for the day.

These nutrients promote good health; the fruit and vegetable packages they come in are visually and gastronomically pleasing, and the relatively low caloric load helps to maintain a healthful weight.

Is this not enough to make you curious to learn more about a vegetarian diet?


Summertime is Bean Time

Pinto bean saladBeans can make up a good part of a vegetarian’s diet yet now that it’s summer, we often forget about them. Typically we allocate beans as the protein in soups, chili and creamy, hardy dips, and lose sight of how delicious they are chilled in hot weather dishes.

Take into account the fiber-filled bean salad. Beans offer protein (repair damaged tissue, transport nutrients through your blood stream, and build strong muscles), market-fresh vegetables add vitamins and antioxidants (that improve immune function and assist in high quality absorption of beneficial nutrients), and a delicious olive oil dressing for much needed dietary fat (to carry the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K to muscle cells and for insulation).

And, summertime bean salads are fast and easy.  You’ll have a filling and flavorful meal the whole family will enjoy in no time!

Summertime Bean Salad

Serves 4

This fresh summer salad is filling yet leaves you light on your feet. Add more or reduce ingredients according to personal choice. If a hardier meal is desired, add in a cup of cooked farro.

Bean Salad

  • Arugula, mesclun or spring mix greens of choice
  • 1 – 1 ½ cups frozen corn, thawed (or equivalent of 2 fresh cobs of corn)
  • 1 can pinto or black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ small purple onion, finely diced
  • ½ medium red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 5-inch piece English cucumber, diced
  • ½ fresh mango, diced
  • Grape tomatoes, cut in half, as garnish

Chili Lime Vinaigrette

  •  2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  •  1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  •  1/2 teaspoon cumin
  •  1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  •  1/2 teaspoon salt
  •  1/3 cup olive oil

Directions

  1. Place a handful or two of arugula on 4 medium-sized salad plates or bowls.
  2. Mix together the remaining salad ingredients from corn to mango in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Whisk vinaigrette ingredients together in a small bowl or pulse in a small blender or food processor until well combined.
  4. Stir vinaigrette into the bean salad mixture and place a few spoonfuls on top of the arugula.
  5. Top salad with grape tomatoes and additional cilantro if desired.

Nutritional analysis (per serving using pinto beans): 297 calories, 33 g carbs, 7.4 g protein, 18 g fat

Exchanges: 2 starches/grains, 1 oz protein, 3 fat servings


Beans by any other name are cancer fighters

vegetarian ironInteresting synergy of the Universe – I’m eating a healthy serving of pinto beans doused with substantial spoonfuls of salsa and open my mail.  Lo and behold, the Dry Bean Quarterly.  Now, you think I kid you, but you never know what finds home in a dietitian’s mailbox.

With many of us either eating to prevent or recover from disease, I was curious to read that eating beans reduces cancer risk.  In the Nurses’ Health Study II, eating common beans (as opposed to soybeans, which are oily) and lentils was associated with a significant reduction in breast cancer risk.  Significant in research is powerful – it might be a small change in a large population but the change rates high on the board.

Dr. Henry Thompson, the author of the Dry Bean Quarterly, did a pre-clinical trial of his own – just to see if the change in risk was real.  It’s keen that a food staple like beans that offers a rich source of protein, resistant starch (not as readily taken up in the bloodstream, thereby keeping blood sugar more constant), and soluble fiber can also keep our breasts cancer-free!  The results of his study showed that cancer cells were inhibited by eating beans.  Hence, he now recommends at least one-half cup of beans or lentils daily, and as much as 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans a day if you’re adventurous.  For more info, log onto www.beaninstitute.com.

Beans, beans, good for your body, the you more you eat, the more you rest — with satisfaction that you’ve done a lot in preventing this disease.


Layered with Love

layered with loveThis Valentine’s Day treat the ones you love with a little Mexican style parfait.  This dish includes three layers – a savory bean and mushroom layer, a smoky red pepper and corn layer, and a refreshing tomatillo-avocado salsa.  Not into the parfait look?  This dish can also be “wrapped” with love in a tortilla.

Ingredients

Savory Layer (makes approximately 3 1/3 cup)

  • 1 ½ cup, chopped, mini portabella mushrooms (4 oz)
  • 1 – 15 oz. can no salt added black beans
  • 2 cups cooked, brown rice
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder

Smoky Layer (makes approximately 1 1/3 cup)

  • 1 red pepper, roasted and chopped
  • ¾ cup frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke

Refreshing Layer (makes approximately 1 ½ cups)

  • 1 cup chopped tomatillos
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. For savory layer combine chopped mushrooms, black beans, and cooked rice in medium size saucepan and cook over medium heat until mushrooms are soft, approximately 10 minutes.  Add chili powder.
  2. For smoky layer cook onion in a frying pan over medium-low heat for five minutes.  Add corn, red peppers, and water.  Cook for an additional five minutes until water has evaporated.  Add liquid smoke.
  3. For refreshing layer gently toss tomatillos, cilantro, avocado, lime juice, salt and pepper to mix in a medium bowl.
  4. To assemble, layer approximately ¾ cup savory beans and mushrooms, 1/3 cup smoky red pepper and corn, and a heaping 1/3 cup refreshing salsa in a 1 cup glass.

Serves four one-cup servings.