Anyone who reads my recipes, either in my weekly column or on my website, will know how much I use beans in my favourite healthy dishes. Whether it is blending them to make a dip, adding them to my stews or casseroles or thickening my soups with them, they are a stable ingredient in my kitchen, and in fact, in any healthy kitchen. So why do I use them so much?
Beans, legumes and pulses are all terms used to describe the edible part of a seed of a plant. These seeds are packed full of nutrients – being incredibly rich in protein, fibre, vitamins and mineral and super powerful antioxidants called phytonutrients.
Because they are so packed full of nutrients, they have been linked to the promotion of good health, including heart health, weight reduction, assisting the body in making energy, helping protect against cancer, protecting cells against damage with their high antioxidant content… the list goes on!
You can buy beans dried and soak them overnight before cooking, or simply buy them in tins, ready for cooking. I put them in everything!
- 2 red onions, finely sliced
- 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoons of coriander seeds
- 1 inch of fresh root ginger - grated
- 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 2 cloves of garlic – crushed
- 1 large red pepper - diced
- 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
- 1 tin of chickpeas – washed and drained
- 5 oz chorizo - diced
- 2 tablespoons of freshly chopped coriander
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place cumin and coriander in a large saucepan and leave for few minutes on heat. Take out of pan and grind in a coffee grinder or a pestle and morter. Or use pre-ground.
- In the meantime, place chopped onions into saucepan and cover with a little water and allow to sweat for 10 mins with lid on.
- Then add the ginger and cinnamon, the ground cumin and coriander, the garlic and red pepper and stir well for a few minutes.
- Add the tinned tomatoes and chorizo and some salt and pepper.
- Add a little hot water (about 100ml) and bring to boil. Turn down heat and let simmer for about 15 mins. Add in the chickpeas and stir well. Leave for a few more minutes.
- At the last minute, stir through the fresh coriander and check for seasoning.
- Serve as is or with a little brown rice.
- Wheat free, gluten free, dairy free, sugar free