Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Legume Phobia

I’ve been wondering why legumes don’t get very much respect these days. Most people know that this group, which includes beans, peas and lentils are probably very good for us. They are great sources of protein, soluble and insoluble fiber, calcium, folate, potassium, iron and magnesium.

That said, there appears to be a disconnect between our intellectual knowledge and our ability to incorporate this nutritional powerhouse into our daily diets.

I believe I know what the problem is. It’s the name – Legume. It’s not manly enough. No self respecting Mid-Westerner or Alaskan would ever utter its name. Many of us are not even sure how to pronounce it, which makes us very uncomfortable. It’s vaguely foreign and effeminate and neither Sarah nor Arnold would ever be seen in the presence of it.

The other significant problem we need to address is the flatulence issue. Even with all the talk in Copenhagen about methane gas emissions, we in this country are still quite reluctant to have a discussion about many bodily functions. Regarding this issue, it is my opinion, that because of cultural reasons, men are more open to farting, while women are generally more circumspect, unless they are adoring fans of Dr. Oz.

As seen in many other areas, men tend to have a double standard when it comes to farting. For many men, public farting is often a rite of passage, but they are usually not too crazy about their women having the same privilege. What else is new….

How To: Edamame Spread/ Pate

Shelled Edamame, or green soy beans, are available frozen from China. I recommend that you purchase USDA certified organic since I don’t have much confidence in food products from China. They are available fresh at most farmers markets during the summer.

Since they are already cooked, just bring them to a boil, and then lower the heat for about five minutes until beans are soft. When cooled, add to food processor. You will need to add some water to get things going. Do this slowly and keep pushing beans down from the sides as you are working.

From this point there are many directions to go. Asian – Chili, garlic, Japanese toasted sesame oil, fermented black beans. Mediterranean – capers, olives, garlic, roasted peppers and olive oil.
Be experimental with your flavors. It should be fun…

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