Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Legumes -- posted by Sarah Grace

As I have been studying nutrition and traditional ways of preparing meals, I've realized that the information I have learned is too interesting and healthful not to share. Therefore, I intend to periodically post tidbits of information and recipes we've tried.

Yesterday for lunch I made dosas, which are Indian pancakes, and they are made with soaked lentils and rice. I used the recipe from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.

Unfortunately, in our busy-busy society, legumes are improperly made, making it uncomfortable for our bodies to digest. Consequently, this healthful and delicious food group is rarely eaten, and when it is, the partaker promptly reaches for the Beano or Gas-Ex.

To make legumes (beans, lentils, etc.) easily digestible, they have to be carefully prepared. Traditional cultures understand this. They soak the legumes for long periods, rinse them, and while they cook the foam is skimmed off. All of this preparation neutralizes the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors. It also breaks down difficult to digest complex sugars.

The dosas tasted similar to latkes or hash browns, but with a pleasantly sour taste that comes from the lentils being soaked in water with lemon juice. We tried them with the yogurt sauce made with garlic and lemon, raw sauerkraut, ketchup, and also salsa. We each had our favorite. The sweetness of the salsa or ketchup nicely balanced the sourness, but if you like sour food, the yogurt sauce and raw sauerkraut are also quite delicious.

I'll be writing about various recipes using whole foods and raw foods. My two main sources are Nourishing Traditions and Sue Gregg Cookbooks. I've also been replacing whole foods in regular recipes with great success. I'm looking forward to sharing them with you.

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