Lentils, red, green and brown

lentils

This week I am restocking my kitchen, after a few weeks of hosting holiday parties.

While I was writing my list of things to purchase I decided that I would add lentils to the list.  I haven’t really cooked with lentils before, but love lentil and mulligatawny soup.

My dad was born and raised in Ireland, but when he was in his early twenties he had an opportunity to work in the Bahrain for a few years.  It was there that he learned how to cook some wonderful aromatic dishes and expanded his culinary skills.  Every weekend at home, my dad would take over the kitchen and make some wonderful concoctions.  Cooking with lentils, he made Mulligatawny and lentil soups.  He introduced our family to curried goat, chicken and beef, fragrant rice etc..  He made his own yogurt and chutney as well.   Thanks to him, I was introduced to a wonderful world of spices and hot foods.

Lentils come in red, green or brown colors and are extremely healthy for you.  They are high in fiber and protein.  Just one cup of lentils contains 15g of fiber and 17.8g of protein.

Because of their high fiber content they help with weight loss. They satisfy your hunger, make you feel full, therefore you eat less.   They also take a while to digest, and because of their slow absorption rate blood sugar levels stay balanced.  This is good news for someone who is diabetic, or hypoglycemic.

Lentils are also good for your heart, because they contain folate and magnesium. Folate lowers homocysteine levels, a serious risk factor for heart disease. Magnesium improves blood flow, oxygen and nutrients throughout the body.

If you cook with lentils, I’d love to hear how you use them, and maybe perhaps share your favorite lentil recipe.  In the meantime there is a link below that has terrific recipes.

Great recipe site for lentils is http://www.lentils.ca/?q=recipe-box/recipe-index

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/legumes-and-legume-products/4338/2

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/lentils/faq-20058072

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