The Bean Shaped like your Kidney!!!!!!

4 Jun 2016

Most of us will get to know our little legume friends the kidney bean through eating chili con carne, the dish that originates from Spain but is now popular in households worldwide.

We'll all be guilty of buying them canned and they are available canned, pre soaked and cooked here on Phangan but it will cost you an arm and a leg. However kidney beans are available in their dry form and although it make take some preparing and planning, you will get much more out of them.

We love to cook with legumes here and kidney beans was our latest addition, we made a beautiful daahl type stew with them, before we get to the recipe, here are the health benefits of the purple coloured kidney bean…

Prevention of Cancer
Kidney beans are loaded with manganese which is an antioxidant and vitamin K which protects cells from oxidative stress which helps protect you from cancer but we would never say anything is a cure.

Brain Function
The vitamin K in the beans is beneficial for the brain and nervous system. They also contain thiamine that is needed by brain cells for cognitive function.

Blood Sugar
Kidney beans contain soluble fiber which helps decrease your metabolism rate of carbohydrates, this stops your blood sugar shooting up after a meal and also the protein in them lowers blood sugar.

Digestion
The fiber in kidney beans regulates bowel movements and increases stools (poop) which also helps maintain good bacteria in the gut and colon.

Cardiovascular Benefits
The high fiber content can lower cholesterol and the bean’s magnesium helps in the healthy function of the cardiovascular system.

Energy Boost
Kidney beans are a rich source of iron that increases energy and is also essential for metabolism.

Source of Protein
Kidney beans have a lot of protein and are said to be the best substitute for meat or dairy in terms of protein.

Kidney beans need to be cooked well as undercooked ones can be toxic! Don’t fret, it’s very simple but just takes a bit of time before they are ready to eat.

Maybe plan if you want to use them for a particular meal as you will have to remember the day before, although there are quicker methods for soaking, this is the simplest as you can forget about them and carry on doing other things until the next day.

It’s simple, wash the beans and put them in some water (one cup to one cup) and leave to soak in the fridge overnight.

So the next day you just have to cook them, rinse them off in clean water and boil for around an hour or until they are soft and tender! Ta-dah!

The great thing about buying kidney beans dry is that they cost less than one hundred baht but will last you for ages, much cheaper and healthier than tins.

We made ours with split soybeans which we prepared in the same way.

Chop an onion and fry it then add garlic, we like a good five plus cloves in our dishes. Add some spices, we used cardamom, curry leaves, cumin and chilli.

Add in any vegetables you wish and a bit of stock or water then add the legumes and simmer for a few minutes until it has reduced to a nice consistency and enjoy!

You can play around so much with kidney beans and other pulses and they are super healthy, next time we will try a bean burger and let you know how it goes!