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Ways to Prepare Legumes

How many ways do you prepare legumes?

They’re an excellent source of protein, fiber, and vitamins/minerals, yet you might be surprised by the many different options for healthy dishes. Here are some of them:

Cooking

It’s important to use the right cooking time for different lentils. The most common and popular kind of lentil is the brown lentil. The flavor is rich and earthy and the shape isn’t changed much during cooking. However, it should be noted that the lentils are very easy to mash. Cooking is done in 20-30 minutes.

Green/French lentils have a stronger flavor and even after cooking have a firm texture. These lentils take around 45 minutes for cooking.

Then there are red/orange/yellow/gold lentils. They require about half an hour to cook and end up sweeter/mushy. These kinds of lentils are popular in many Indian dishes.

Before you cook the lentils make sure to remove pebbles/debris that might be mixed in with them. Then use running water to rinse them. The next step is to move the beans to a saucepan. Then add water. Lentils usually have a 2:1 water/lentil ratio but it’s better to use a little extra water. This is especially true for lentils that need over half an hour for cooking. Add any seasonings and boil the water. Then lower the heat until it simmers. Cook the beans uncovered for 20-30 minutes until they’re tender. If needed add water so the lentils stay submerged in the H2O.

Lentil Salads

Lentils are excellent for salads and especially red and green lentils. They can be added to other salads or be the salad’s main ingredient. One excellent choice is a warm salad with veggies. Cook 1.5 cups of red lentils under tender. While cooking sauté chopped onion and peppers. Then mix the sautéed veggies with lentils. You can then add some baby spinach into the salad. Red wine vinegar dressing can be used to top the salad.

Dals/Stews

Dals are hearty stews although it can also refer to legumes to produce them. The majority of dals are cooked using lentils although they can be made from other beans or split peas. In order to make dals first cook the lentils in water/broth with tomatoes, onions, and Indian spices like cumin, turmeric, ginger, curry, coriander, mustard seeds, and others. You can serve the dish with either rice or roti.

There are various types of dals to make. They include Masoor dal from Northern India with a bright flavor. There’s also Tamillian meals from southern India. They include thick lentil/coconut stews and contain many veggies. This stew includes potato, cabbage, potato, and lentils.

Lentil Soups

This is an excellent way to use lentils in your dishes. There are various options but they tend to include many types of veggies including:

Onion

Garlic

Celery

Carrot

Zucchini

Cook the veggies in 1 spoonful of oil until they get tender. Then add lentils, water/broth, and diced tomatoes. You can also add various seasonings like basil, parsley, thyme, cumin, salt, and black pepper. In 45 minutes you’ll have a rich/hearty lentil vegetable soup.