notes from Cindy DeOms
NOTES: We are finishing up the 2nd week of our Daniel Fast. Remember to modify the fast as you need. We will continue to share notes and insight from Cindy. Her insight will help us to stick to the fast and make it successful.
I don't know why many people find black beans unappealing. Like all beans, they are high in fiber, low in fat and an excellent source of protein. Additionally, beans are thought to lower bad cholesterol, which makes them a heart healthy addition to anyone's diet. Most people here in our area are familiar with pintos as they are a staple of the Southern American diet. But you can branch out into different beans that add a distinctly different flavor to your meals. Black beans are found primarily in South American and Caribbean cuisines.
You can incorporate black beans in various ways. Mix a handful into salsa and enjoy with (baked) tortilla chips as a snack or add some whole grain rice and make a meal of it. Black bean soup is wonderful on those chilly days. I have a great recipe I will share next week. I have already shared recipes such as bean dip and chicken tortilla soup (without the chicken) that include black beans. If you didn't get a copy, there are more on the front desk at church.
You can also make black beans with an extra boost of flavor that can be almost a meal itself. After you soak and rinse your dried beans, add water again and cook for 30 minutes or so. Then add a tablespoon of garlic, a small chopped onion and simmer another 30 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and a bit of chopped cilantro. (I use the leaves from about 10-12 stalks.) Simmer until tender to taste. These are good not just by themselves but also to use in making tacos (use the beans instead of meat). Corn tortillas (or taco shells) can be purchased uncooked and put on a lightly oiled hot griddle to cook instead of deep fried. They are more chewy than crunchy this way but I like them better.
Some folks avoid beans because of the effect on your digestion system. (Beans, beans, good for your heart, the more you eat, the more you....) However, you can minimize that at home. When making dried beans at home, you must first soak the beans, either overnight or a quick soak. Read the package directions if you don't know what I'm talking about! Research has shown that the simple step of discarding that first soak water reduces the amount of raffinose, which is what makes beans the "musical fruit". When using canned beans, rinse them first. The good news is that, unlike vegetables, beans do not lose any nutrients when commercially canned. Canned beans are full of sodium, though, so be cautious if you are watching your intake.
Caution note: Black beans contain purines, which can exacerbate conditions such as gout and kidney stones.
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