Hummus, Falafel, & the Rest of the Legumes! What’s the Deal?

August 04, 2015

We love our traditions. Especially when it comes down to food. We always hear our parents boasting about the benefits or even reminiscing over a legumes dish! You guessed it, they’ve been right and have had the right to boast all along.

 

Legumes consist of chickpeas, beans, soybeans, lentils, lupines, carob flour, and peas. What’s so magical? They’re excellent sources of vegetarian protein especially in comparison to red meat which are marbleized with fat. These proteins are rich in fiber, yes that one component that fights cholesterol, helps you stay full for longer, and aids your digestion process. And a component that concerns most, legumes are very low in fats (1.8-2.6 grams per 100 grams)! At the same time, they’re rich in vitamins and minerals including, folate, potassium, magnesium, iron, copper, and manganese.

 

Studies over the years revealed that eating beans daily is a practice that can decrease diseases and conditions accountable for 48% of deaths worldwide ! These conditions include diabetes type 2, colorectal cancer, cardiovascular disease, overweight and obesity as well as abnormal cholesterol levels.

Hummus (Chickpea Dip)

Hummus (chickpea dip)

Falafel (preferably baked)

Falafel (preferably baked)

In fact, our Mediterranean legume traditions are quite a trend in the western world where hummus and falafel are always a must-have! They’ve also proved to be quite useful in times when you want to cook on a budget, a can of chickpeas is less than a $1 and serves 2 plates. And you could do so many variations with the recipes!

Balila

Balila

Here’s one of our favorite chickpea breakfast recipes: Balila, serves 2 plates
Ingredients:

  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • ¼ cup squeeze lemon
  • ¼ cup of olive oil
  • 3 mashed cloves of garlic
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup chopped tomato for garnish

 

Preparation:

  1. Drain the chickpeas can and boil in water for 10 minutes.
  2. Place the chickpeas in a bowl, keeping ¼ cup of the boiled water.
  3. Add the lemon, olive oil, garlic and mix well.
  4. Top it with chopped tomato for garnish.
    Enjoy!
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Baraa El Sabbagh

US Registered Dietitian, Personal Trainer, Sports Nutritionist at Healthy Happy Us
Her passion for athletics and nutrition is contagious. The fireball of the group is a certified personal trainer and sports nutritionist, who will always find a solution for your exercise woes. Baraa is a research enthusiast who will never let a new study slip past her without dissecting it. She loves sharing all of her daily health tricks with you as they will be one of the reasons you will succeed in your health journey.

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