Thursday, 31 May 2012
Lima Beans You'll Actually Like
Lima beans don't get a lot of love these days. They've been pushed aside by their fancy pants cousins, fava beans and edamame. It's near impossible to find them fresh in the market, and difficult even to find them frozen.
I can hear the "so what's" from here. Who wants to eat lima beans anyway?
I grew up eating lima beans and enjoy them still. Besides, they're good for you!
Lima beans are very high in fiber. A single cup of cooked lima beans will provide you with 52.6% of your daily requirement of fibre. That fiber contributes to cholesterol reduction and helps to regulate blood glucose metabolism.
A cup of lima beans contains 24.5% of your daily requirement of iron and 48.5% of your daily requirement of manganese (the key oxidative enzyme superoxide dismutase, which disarms free radicals produced within the mitochondria - the energy production factories within our cells.) It also contains a whopping 86.5% of your day's requirement of molybdenum, which is very useful in reducing your body's sensitivity to sulphites (food additives found in many commercially packaged foods).
That same cup of lima beans contains 14.7 grams of protein (that's 29.3% of the required daily value) and, when combined with a whole grain, provides protein comparable to that provided by meat or dairy products, but without the fat. They are an excellent protein source for those considering incorporating more vegetarian dishes into their diet.
Still, what does it matter if they're good for you if you can't stand to eat them?
Many people actively dislike lima beans, especially the frozen ones.
I can fix that though.
I can show you how to cook frozen lima beans so that you'll actually like them.
You can thank me later. ;)
Start by chopping a small to medium sized onion and sauteeing it in a little butter or oil until it's translucent. Add in 300 grams of frozen lima beans (the amount contained in the smallest Green Giant package) and 4 cups of good stock. Homemade vegetable or chicken stock work best, but you can use packaged stock too. Just be sure, if using packaged stock, that you use one that is low in sodium. Otherwise your beans will end up being 'way too salty.
If you want to, you can add in 1/2 teaspoon of cumin.
Bring the pot to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking the beans until the stock has reduced to make a sauce for the beans, thickened by the soluable fiber from the beans themselves. There should be almost no liquid left in the pot.
That's it. The beans are ready to eat. You'll find that they have a soft, buttery texture and wonderful flavour. You can serve them just as they are, mix in a little crispy bacon, or combine them with corn to make succotash. Enjoy!
nutrition information: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=59