It’s Struggle Meal Time

Photo by Dayvison de Oliveira Silva on Pexels.com

Rice and beans may be a struggle meal, but there’s a reason so many gravitate to this humble dish. It’s filling, it’s nutritious, and it’s cheap. Given the right preparation and a few seasonings, rice and beans can also be delicious and satisfying. Beans are basic, but also infinitely versatile.

Which Beans Have the Most Protein?https://vegnews.com/2022/8/bean-protein-guide

I’ve known for quite some time that beans are a poor person’s meal. But in all of my years on the planet this is the first time I’ve heard of beans referred to as a struggle meal. Well struggling or not everyone should be eating more beans for the health benefits.

Start-up of the month: non-HFSS cereals (Brave) — The Food Science Addict

Are you looking for a better understanding of non-HFSS foods? Do you want to know which brand is thriving? Brave is a UK plant-based snack brand. They have recently developed a grain-free, sugar-free breakfast cereal product made from chickpeas and peas. This product is known as Super Hoops (available in Original and Cinnamon flavours) and,…

Start-up of the month: non-HFSS cereals (Brave) — The Food Science Addict

HFSS = (High in Fat, Sugar, and Salt).

A small step in the right direction. But you still have to get consumers to buy, try, and buy again. Changing habits can be very hard to do.

WHAT? Another Website Devoted to Beans?

Yes there is. https://beaninstitute.com/

Here is another post in my world famous Beans for Breakfast AND Electronic Sticky Note series. Honestly, I’m just surfing the Internet looking for bean recipes to make when the temperature outside will be 106 degrees F and I don’t want HOT beans. Note for new visitors to this blog:

  • I do eat beans for breakfast on occasion and
  • An electronic sticky note is a Memo to Self with links to websites for recipes to try as I expand my bean recipe repertoire.

WOO HOO!

The other day I discovered 30 Recipes with a Can of Chickpeas at https://feelgoodfoodie.net/chickpeas-recipes/

I also found 15 Nutritious Vegan White Bean Recipes at https://www.thefullhelping.com/15-nutritious-vegan-white-bean-recipes/

Double WOO HOO!

My bean obsession began many years ago during my vegetarian years. I still have this cookbook as proof.

Copyright date is 1984.

In blue zones areas, we found that the longest-lived people eat a full cup of beans every day.

The World’s #1 Longevity Food — https://www.bluezones.com/2016/06/10-things-about-beans/#

Always remember what you don’t eat is as important if not more important to health and longevity than what you eat.

Global Supplies of Chickpeas Could Dip 20% This Year

Tight supplies have helped push U.S. retail prices higher. Chickpeas on U.S. grocery shelves jumped 12% from last year, nearly 17% higher than prior to the pandemic, according to the most recent NielsenIQ data. Hummus prices have increased 6.9% since 2019.

Fewer chickpeas means cheap protein and hummus could be harder to find — https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/focus-fewer-chickpeas-means-cheap-protein-and-hummus-could-be-harder-to-find

I immediately checked the pantry. I have just two 16 ounce tins of chickpeas and approximately half a pound dried. Time to restock!

Crispy Black Bean Tacos with Feta and Honey-Lime Cabbage Slaw

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away I used to make Crispy Black Bean Tacos with Feta and Cabbage Slaw – Bon Appétit. Tonight was a good night to have black bean tacos so I pulled up my original post from nearly eight years ago Crispy Black Bean Tacos with Feta and Cabbage Slaw – (NOT) Bon Appétit

No surprises this time.  I make these tacos differently now. Time for another revision.

The Beans

  • 1 15-ounce can organic low sodium black beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (maybe more)
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 medium size lime juiced
  • 1 large clove garlic minced
  • pinch oregano, dash celery salt (trust me on this one)

The Slaw

  • 1 14 ounce bag cabbage slaw mix
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • onion and garlic powders, a dash apiece
  • salt and pepper
  • juice of 1.5 limes
  • 2-3 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 T honey

Taco Things

  • 4 white or yellow corn tortilla shells, crispy
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese (cheddar is OK too)
  • Your favorite hot sauce or salsa
  1.  Drain and rinse the black beans, set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, saute the onion on medium flame until soft and slightly browned. Add oregano, cumin, and garlic. Saute until the spices are fragrant, about a minute or two.
  3. Add the well drained black beans.  Add juice of half a lime. Heat until warmed through.  Mash the beans with a spoon but leave some beans whole and chunky. Season with celery salt. Set aside.

The Slaw

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the olive oil and juice of 1.5 limes.  Mix in honey. Add olive oil to create a smooth dressing. Season to taste with onion/garlic powders, salt and pepper.  
  2. Add the cabbage slaw mix.  Mix well, adjust for seasoning, and set aside.

This recipe will make enough for 4-6 tacos.  If you need more servings, double the bean recipe and buy more taco shells. You will not need to double the cabbage slaw portion.  You’ll have plenty.

Construct your tacos.  

TIPS –

We recently discovered La Tiara authentic Mexican taco shells from Gladstone Missouri.  Yeah, I was thinking the same thing as you until I tried these shells.   Use bagged sliced slaw for pure convenience.  Fresh cabbage? Only if you have the time and eschew convenience. Fresh avocado would be nice. Beer is also a perfect side dish for these tacos.

Veganistas – use vegan cheese.

Is There a Website Devoted to Beans?

Yes there is. https://usdrybeans.com/

This is another post in my world famous Beans for Breakfast series.

I post links like this to remind readers no one can possibly teach you everything. There is a ton of information on the internet to research and read to improve your food and nutrition knowledge. But you have to take the time and be motivated to find solid, good information. Avoiding fad diets would be a good thing too.

And for the conspiracy theorists out there feel free to use this information to fight back against the World Economic Forum telling us to eat bugs. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/07/good-grub-why-we-might-be-eating-insects-soon/

Eat beans instead of bugs.

Postscript –

I posted then got this:

WOO HOO!

How To Decide if It’s a Lentil Soup Day

It’s a lentil soup day.

A lot of readers liked Spanish Style Lentils and so do I. But today I’m making my time tested lentil soup recipe which you can find here The Pandemic Pantry -Lentil Soup. Or if you’re feeling adventurous try one of the Lentil Recipes – The First Mess which to be honest I haven’t tried yet.

I’m glad I don’t need mushrooms because I used the one I bought recently in another dish.

Absolutely not an altered photo. Just one very large button mushroom.

I added more carrots and so far at the 30 minute mark I’ve used the entire quart of organic low sodium chicken broth. I did not use the mutant carrot because it went bad before I could use it.

You’re starting to see some interesting produce nowadays.

Today’s post was for the critic who complained about the lack of pictures in this blog.

Beans for Breakfast – 03.18.22

Abstract

Given the emerging health benefits of regular legume consumption, we hypothesized that the historically low legume consumption levels in US adults increased. We evaluated legume consumption patterns in US adults using cross-sectional data from the 2011-2012 and 2013-2014-year cycles of National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) and a 2017 cross-sectional, online survey of Oregon families named “Beans, Lentils, Peas (BLP) Survey”. We also compared legume consumption patterns between consumers below US dietary recommendations for mature legumes (<37.5 g/day, marginal), below levels showing nutritional and disease-prevention benefits (37.5-87.49 g/day, recommended); and levels demonstrating nutritional and disease prevention benefits (≥87.5 g/day; beneficial). In NHANES, legume consumption remained low in US adults and declined from 2011 to 2014 (mature legumes: 12.8 to 8.3%; dry beans: 10.0 to 6.5%). In BLP, less than 5% consumed legumes daily; approximately one-third did not consume legumes during the last month. Marginal mature-legume consumers ate a limited variety of legumes (dry beans and green legumes on a weekly to monthly basis). Beneficial amount consumers ate mature legumes daily or every other day and included chickpeas, lentils and dry peas to their legume mix. Our data suggest that legume consumption declined in US adults, warranting improved communication about the benefits of regular legume consumption.

Perera T, Russo C, Takata Y, Bobe G. Legume Consumption Patterns in US Adults: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2011-2014 and Beans, Lentils, Peas (BLP) 2017 Survey. Nutrients. 2020 Apr 27;12(5):1237. doi: 10.3390/nu12051237. PMID: 32349355; PMCID: PMC7281997.

Here’s a link to the study https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32349355/

My love of beans began when I moved to Texas and discovered fast food bean burritos. I’ve pretty much stopped eating restaurant prepared bean burritos since discovering my favorite local version has nearly 1200 mg of sodium in one burrito.

Too much sodium in my food tends to keep me in my fat jeans.

You can control the amount of salt in home cooked beans. If you are cooking with canned beans try the low sodium versions. Or if you are cooking with the regular canned varieties, rinse and drain several times before adding to your dish. This will cut down on the sodium content. Believe it or not, someone actually did a lab analysis on this:

If you’re watching your sodium intake, we have good news. In each case, draining and rinsing beans lowered the sodium by about 100 milligrams per ½-cup serving—or 20.7 to 26.5 percent.

Does Rinsing Canned Beans Remove Sodium? https://www.cooksillustrated.com/how_tos/11227-does-rinsing-canned-beans-remove-sodium

White Bean and Sweet Potato Stew

Sunday is a good Beanday. A day of rest. Maybe a few, but not too many errands. Hang out the rest of the day at home and make a pot of beans for the week.

This morning I was compiling a dried bean inventory so that I wouldn’t buy more of what I already have on hand. My beans are in various containers in the pantry and on the kitchen counter. Some packages of dried beans are unopened. My quick inventory told me I had green split peas, adzuki, black beans, black eyed peas, red and brown lentils, chickpeas, pinto, mayacabo, white beans, and an unidentified variety which I had to research to figure out I had Cranberry beans!

The white beans were stored in a plastic baggie and fearing they may have been in the pantry since the last time I made Wing and Leg Navy Bean Soup I thought I would cook them. After a triple rinse I quick soaked them (rinse, drain, pour boiling water over all and cover for one hour). Drain again, cover with fresh filtered water, a little onion powder, garlic powder, one bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to super low, and simmer for several hours.

Now I had a pot of beans before deciding what dish to make. After exhausting the possibilities I decided upon a White Bean and Sweet Potato Stew. My inspiration came from the same source as Spanish Style Lentils. So if you’re a visual learner, here you go:

Here’s a link to the original recipe – https://spainonafork.com/spanish-white-bean-and-sweet-potato-stew-recipe/

Here’s what I’ll eating all week.

  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 cup canned stewed tomatoes
  • dash apple cider vinegar
  • 3 cups cooked white beans
  • 1 large sweet potato peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2-3 cups organic vegetable stock
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika and 1/2 tsp regular sweet paprika
  • freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste
  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium sized stock pot
  2. Add the onion, bell pepper and carrot. Saute until the onion is translucent. Add garlic and both paprika powders. Saute briefly for about a minute.
  3. Add the tomatoes, vinegar and simmer for five minutes. Break up the tomatoes with a wooden spoon. Continue to simmer until the mixture thickens.
  4. Add the beans, sweet potato, and two cups of broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer covered for around 30 minutes. Check and stir throughout this process and add more broth to desired thickness and to prevent sticking/burning of the stew.
  5. When the potatoes are tender the stew is done. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and salt.
  6. Makes approximately six large servings.

Now I need to figure out what to make with the butternut squash I baked in the oven.