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Five reasons to have your finger on the pulse

By Faeza
24 May 2016

In 2013 the United Nations designated 2016 the International Year of the Pulses. So we thought we’d share why we love the little miracles so much.

High in protein, vitamins and minerals, low in fat, cholesterol-free and a good source of fibre, pulses are disease-busting and are cheaper than animal based protein.

Five reasons to choose pulses

  1. Pulses are a great source of protein. This means they can be particularly important for people who do not get protein by eating meat, fish or dairy products.

  1. Pulses can also be a healthy choice for meat-eaters. You can add pulses to soups, casseroles and meat sauces to add extra texture and flavour. This means you can use less meat, which makes the dish lower in fat and cheaper.

  1. Pulses are a good source of iron.

  1. Pulses are a starchy food and add fibre to your meal. Eating a diet high in fibre is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Pulses protect against diseases.

  1. Pulse crops are one of the most environmentally friendly crops a farmer can grow. Water use in vegetables and pulses is typically much lower than that used in meat production. Pulses also contribute to soil quality by fixing nitrogen in the soil and are often used as a rotation crop.

Below is a delicious recipe using lentils, an amazing and versatile pulse.

Lentil tarts

Makes 12 tarts

Ingredients

2 cups cooked Pouyoukas / Lion lentils

1 small onion

1 tablespoon (15 ml) white flour

1 teaspoon (5 ml) dried mint

1 teaspoon (5 ml) spice mix

1 tablespoon (15 ml) vegetable oil

1 cup bread crumbs

Method

Drain and mash lentils. Chop onion and fry in vegetable oil. Set aside.

Cook flour until light brown.

Mix flour, mashed lentils, spices and onion and set aside to cool.

Form mixture into tart shape and coat with breadcrumbs.

Heat the oil and deep-fry tarts until gold and crispy on both sides.

Let cool for a minute and serve.

Serve these delicious lentil tarts with barley or brown rice.