Monday, November 10, 2008

Day 225- Nutrition Bite

The ancient Greeks used lentils in a variety of ways including making bread. The Catholics who couldn't afford to buy fish during lent ate lentils. The double convex optical lens gets its name 'lenticular' from the shape of the lentil. Lentils have been considered to be 'peasant' food over the centuries. However, they are nutritious and flavorful. Lentils, like beans, are a good source of protein. Lentils also provide calcium and phosphorus, vitamin B and iron. Lentils are a great substitute for meat!

Lentil Soup
1 cup lentils
4 cups of chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 bay leaf
1 onion chopped
2 celery stalks chopped
2 carrots chopped
2 cups of canned tomatoes or 1 can of tomato paste
1 Tbs. oil
1 Tbs. parsley
1 tsp. basil
1 pinch of thyme
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp lemon juice
1 Tbs. honey

Instructions: Add onions, lentils, bay leaf, and broth and boil for 30 minutes. Then, add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes.

-by Grandma Stum

Sugar Preacher's Experience
My 93-year-old Grandma is very healthy! She is still going to water aerobics, drinking green smoothies, and eating lentil soup. (Lentil soup, fresh spinach salad, natural yogurt, and steel-cut oats are her staples.) Exercise combined with her diet contributes to her longevity and great health! I hope I'm kicking it at 93!

1 comment:

The Rambler said...

Lentils are #2 in vegtable sources of protein (soy beans are number one but soy products should be eaten in moderation due to compounds that the body sees as estrogen).

Some of the best benefits of lentils though is that they are easier to digest than other beans, because of their flat thin shape, dried lentils don't need to be soaked overnight or cooked for an hour. Most lentils cook in 20 to 30 minutes making them more ideal than dried pinto or black beans for a quick weeknight meal.

Although they all taste about the same, the different varieties of lentils translate into different textures so some lentils are better for salads while others are better for daal or soups (it depends whether you want them to break down and be creamy or hold their shape and be firm).

And just one last litle known lentil fact, the U.S. is the greatest producer of lentils in the world, although we only eat about 6% of them.