Wednesday, 23 February 2011

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Healthy Black Bean Soup/Sunde Sorte Bønnesuppe/黑豆湯[hēi dòu tāng]

Serves 2-4

Preparation and Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
1. 1 cup dried black beans
2. 2 dried bay leaves (laurbærblade)
3. 1 litre or 4 cups water
4. Salt & pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Cook beans with water in a pressure cooker for 20 minutes at high pressure (setting no. 2 on my pressure cooker and no. 2 on my stove).

2. To save energy, switch off the stove, but let the cooker stay on the stove for 5-10 minutes.

3. Then carefully open the release vault and allow the steam to escape before opening the lid.

4. Add salt and pepper to taste.

5. Discard bay leaves and blend the black beans directly in the pot with a stick blender and serve :-)

Tips:
1. You can soak the beans the night before, but it is not really necessary.

Nutritional Value:
Black beans are an excellent source of iron and manganese. Black beans are an excellent source of cholesterol-lowering fiber and high quality protein. Black beans are high in dietary fiber, folate, molybdenum, tryptophan, vitamin B1 (thiamin), complex carbohydrates, magnesium and phosphorus.

Black beans have also recently been reported to be an extremely good source of nutritional antioxidants. Gram for gram, black beans are found to have the most antioxidant activity in the bean family.

Black beans help protect against cancer, lower heart attack risk and are good for diabetic as it give you energy to burn while stabilizing blood sugar. When combined with a whole grain such as whole wheat pasta or brown rice, provide protein comparable to that of meat or dairy foods without the high calories or saturated fat found in these foods.

Additional Information:
I accidentally concorted this healthy yet super delicious recipe, while trying to follow a much more complicated recipe. I tested it, and this simple soup brought out the flavour of black beans perfectly. But unfortunately I went on to add all the other ingredients (olive oil, carrots, cumin, chilli powder, celery, onion and garlic) the other recipe called for, and it turned out disastrous. Next time, I will just stop at this step. This recipe is amazingly simple, but yet it tastes so good, which is hard to believe. But it truly does. Try it and DON'T add any other ingredients. You will fall in love with simply black beans with this soup :-) I didn't have any picture for this soup, as I didn't think of taking a picture before I added all the other unnecessary ingredients. Will put up a picture when I make this soup again.

From today's experience, I learned one lesson: sometimes the fewer ingredients, the better, and it is best to use one main ingredient.

References:
http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=2

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