How to cook legumes to improve their digestiblity

When you’re cooking legumes like lentils, chickpeas and beans from scratch, the right preparation process is highly important to avoid indigestion.
There’s a few simple rules:

  • Soak the dry legumes for at least the soaking times provided on the package, usually you can soak them over night, or even 48 h, the longer the better. Change the water at least once if you can. Throw out the soaking water as it contains the substances you want to avoid for proper digestion. Lentils don’t require soaking, but if you do soak them you enhance the nutrients and digestibility, as soaking is always the start of the sprouting process.
  • The longer you soaked your beans, the less the cooking time. Still, long and slow cooking is the best way to make them digestible
  • Don’t add salt and acid ingredient (vinegar, tomatoes) until the end as they interfere with the beans becoming tender
  • Add spices that counteract bloating and help with digestion: like cumin, ginger, fennel, cinnamon and apple cider vinegar.

Lentil Mash

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Makes about 4 servings

  • 500 g lentils
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 piece of ginger
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • some dried parsley or coriander
  • olive oil
  • apple cider vinegar

Rinse the lentils. Put in a pot with twice the amount of water. Grate the carrots and ginger and add them in. Cook for about 20 min or until the lentils become mushy and everything turns into one mash. Add the spices towards the end. Try it and play with the spices according to your taste. Blend everything up if you like to have it really smooth as a spread, otherwise just leave it as it is. Add the the olive oil and apple cider vinegar after cooking as preservatives, if you want to store this in your fridge for a couple of day, otherwise you can also just eat it as it is.
Serve with some raw veggies, like celery and red peppers or use it as a spread on your favourite bread.

Zucchini-Pea Soup

I know how it goes, we're all busy, many people grab fast food because they think they don't have the time to cook. No matter our excuses, we all are in dire need for quick and easy recipes, that's why I love this one.
Peas provide you with a good amount of filling protein and zucchini is low in calories while being high in vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals to support our bodies functions. Coconut oil got wonderful medium chained fatty acids, that are very benefical for your brain and can even help you loose weight, because they are not stored as fat right away but used as fuel directly.
Feel free to add other toppings if you like.

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Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 900 g zucchini
  • 200g peas (I used frozen ones)
  • 1/2 cup of filtered water (or a little more depending on how thick or liquid you like it)
  • sea salt
  • pepper
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil


Cut the zucchini in pieces. Cook them with the peas in water for 10 minutes with the lid closed. Add the coconut oil and cook for another minute. Now use a hand-held blender to blend it up and add some salt and pepper to taste. You may add a little coconut milk if you like it more creamy. Enjoy! 

Zucchini-Pea Soup with chicken, for those that choose to eat meat ;)

Zucchini-Pea Soup with chicken, for those that choose to eat meat ;)

Bell pepper guacamole boats

This is an easy, delicious snack full of life-giving enzymes and nutrients. :)

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You need: 

  • red bell pepper (as many as you want)
  • sprouts (any kind you like)
  • salad leaves

And for the guacamole there are two versions to chose from, they will both make a batch full to last a couple days or for several people.

Guacamole Version 1

  • 3 avocados
  • 1 onion
  • 2 tomatoes
  • juice of 1 lemon or lime
  • optional: some garlic
  • sea salt
  • cayenne pepper and black pepper

Dice the onion and the tomatoes in small pieces. Cut the avocado in half, remove the stone, then carve in cubes with your knife. Now, use a spoon to take out the flesh. Press the garlic with a garlic press. Put everything into a bowl and just mash it with a fork. If you like to have it completely smooth use your blender instead.
 

Version 2: Curry Guacamole

  • 3 avocados
  • 2 tomatoes 
  • 1 onion
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 2 pitted medjool dates
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 dash of cayenne pepper
  • some finely chopped parsley or cilantro 
  • optional: 1 garlic clove

Preperation is exactly the same like above. Again, mash everything with a fork or put it in your blender if you like to have a smooth cream.

Now, cut the bell peppers like in the picture in little boats and fill them with the guacamole and top with the sprouts and salad leaves. Voilà!