Beautiful Beans

Baked beans are a well-loved food item, popular with young and old alike. The good new is they’re very nutritious!

Beans (and other legumes such as lentils and chickpeas) are packed full of fibre, protein and vitamins and minerals such as iron and folate. Because they’re so nutritious, beans are a valuable meat-subtitute for vegetarians. Plus, they’re super cheap and easy to prepare – the perfect mid-week meal. Many of us can all benefit from more vegetarian meals during the week (from a cost and health perspective), so why not put beans on your menu?
Although there’s nothing wrong with canned baked beans (it’s always good to go for the salt reduced option), making your own is a wonderful idea. This allows you to add spice to jazz up the flavor and sneak in extra vegetables to boost the nutrient content of your meal. And you can use any beans you like – kidney, cannellini, butter beans – whatever you wish. Why not use a combination?

Serve your beans with wholegrain toast spread with avocado and you’ve got yourself one tasty, healthy and easy meal that will be wonderful as leftovers the next day.
Try this yummy bean recipe from taste.com.au.

Spicy beans

 

Preparation Time
15 minutes

Cooking Time
30 minutes

Ingredients (serves 6)
1 brown onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried basil leaves
1-2 tsp dried chilli flakes
2 red capsicums, halved, deseeded, cut into 1cm pieces
2 celery sticks, trimmed, cut into 1cm pieces
1 carrot, peeled, cut into 1cm pieces
700ml passata (tomato pasta sauce)
2 x 400g cans cannellini beans, rinsed, drained

Method
1. Heat oil in the pan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, turmeric, coriander, cumin, basil and chilli. Cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes or until the onion is soft.
2. Add the capsicum, celery and carrot, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until soft.
3. Stir in the passata. Increase heat to medium-high. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Stir in the beans. Cook for 5 minutes or until heated through. Season with pepper to serve.