Today is National Bean Day

Beans. They’re a delicious and versatile legume that American’s often forget about! Green beans, kidney beans, baked beans, garbanzo beans, chili beans, black beans, soybeans, and lentils are just a few types of beans. If you really think about it, you can find beans in many of your favorite dishes, like chili, humus, bean burritos, and minestrone soup. A very popular 2011 resolution, is to lose weight. Beans offer a host of nutritional value that will keep you feeling full and satisfied all day. For example, beans have significant amounts of fiber and soluble fiber which can help lower cholesterol- one cup of cooked beans provides between nine to thirteen grams of fiber. Beans are also high in protein, complex carbohydrates, folate, and iron. (Wikipedia) A little tip to curb the flatulence caused by beans: add a pinch of coriander or cumin to your dish.

One of my favorite Mediterranean dishes is mjaddara, a lentil and rice dish served with caramelized onions.

Mjaddara

Ingredients

1 c brown lentils
1/2 c rice
4 c water
2 t cumin powder, or to taste
salt to taste
2 onions sliced
cooking oil
Pickles, tomatoes, and Greek or Lebanese yogurt

Directions
1- In a large cooking pot, add lentils and water. Cook, uncovered, on medium heat for 20 minutes, or until lentils start to soften. Add rice, cumin, and salt. Cover and simmer 20 minutes. Water should be almost completely absorbed. Fluff with a fork.
2- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large frying pan. Add sliced onions. Saute until caramelized, about 15 minutes.
Serve over mjaddara. Garnish with pickles and tomatoes.
3- If you find the dish to be dry, serve mjaddara with yogurt.

What is your favorite bean dish?

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