The Richmond Register

September 17, 2013

Beans, a great source of protein, fiber

By Arritta Morris
Register Columnist

RICHMOND — Health professionals in the nutrition field recommend consuming some form of beans at least three times a week. All beans are a good source of fiber and other nutrition. I will share with you some recipes that I make at least twice a week.



Red beans and rice

INGREDIENTS:


1 green bell pepper chopped

1 onion chopped

three stalks of celery chopped

1 lb of red kidney beans in the dried form

DIRECTIONS:

Place kidney beans and chopped vegetables in a large stock pot. Add enough water to cover. Start a rolling boil. Add water as needed. The kidney beans cook a lot faster than the pinto or lima bean. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Boil about three cups of rice. This is a great item to serve over rice. It is famous, if you ever travel to New Orleans. I like to add a little bit of hot sauce to my plate.



How to fix good Pinto beans

INGREDIENTS:

One small package of pinto beans (I also like to use the mixed type beans.)

One small onion

One raw potato peeled

Several pieces of chopped ham

DIRECTIONS:

Wash beans and place in a stock pot with the whole onion, whole potato and ham. Cook with a rolling boil till thick and done. Be sure and add water as needed. The reason for the raw potato is that it acts as a thickening agent. I add salt as needed.

I wanted to plant some green beans one year, so I went to the store and bought a bag of pinto beans. I planted the pintos and low and behold I got green beans. They were really good. The pinto bean is harvested after the green part turns to a dry state.



Cannellini beans and greens

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup chopped onion

1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans

3 cups fresh baby spinach

1 tablespoon lemon juice

DIRECTIONS:

In a sprayed nonstick skillet cook and stir onion. Add beans and 1/2 cup water

Bring to a boil, stir in spinach and cook just until spinach wilts. Sprinkle with lemon juice.

If you are looking to reduce calories, cannellini beans, which have only 90 calories per 1/2 cup, are a better choice than navy beans at 148 calories per 1/2 cup.

Arritta Morris has a bachelor’s degree in nutrition and a master’s degree in counseling from Eastern Kentucky University. She is certified as a food service specialist by the School Food Service Association.