Sunday, January 2, 2011

Beans, Beans, the magical Fruit . . . . Red Beans and Rice for Dinner!

All of my kids love to eat red beans and rice for dinner. It is a New Orleans Style Red Beans and Rice. I make it from scratch, which sound intimidating, but really the hardest part is remembering to soak the beans the night before. I got this recipe from my Brother Scott and his wife Brenda. They put together a cook book of all their favorite recipes, and this is one of our favorites from their cookbook.

I usually make brown rice for dinner, but since this meal is served with beans, I serve it with white rice. A green salad tastes great with it, but I often don't have time or energy mid week to pull it off.

1/2 pound small red beans
1/2 pound ham hocks or smoked ham (or ham bone) (or just chop up 1 C. of ham and add it towards the end)
1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 T parsley, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1 or 2 bay leaves
2 large cloves garlic, crushed

To add at the end

1/4 Cup butter (I usually cut this in half)
salt and pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
a few shakes of Tabasco (and put the Tabasco on the table for those that like it spicy)

Serve with 3 Cups of cooked white rice

Soak the beans overnight. Rinse and drain the beans in the morning. Put beans, ham, celery, parsley, bell pepper, bay leaf, onion and garlic in a crock pot with about 4 C. of fresh water (NOT the same water you soaked the beans in). Cook on Low for about 8 hours. About 1 hour before eating, add the butter, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Remove the hame bone.

The best time to make red beans and rice is when you have had a ham and have a ham bone. Just throw the bone in the freezer in a zip lock bag until you are ready to make it.

Fiber Facts from an old post on fiber. Please Click here to get a refresher on fiber and beans.

Dietary fiber consists of non digestible carbohydrates and lignin that are intrinsic and intact in plants. This includes plant non starch polysaccharides (for example, cellulose, pectin, gums, hemicellulose, and fibers contained in oat and wheat bran), oligosaccharides, lignin, and some resistant starch.
Since fiber isn't digested, but rather "passed through", people who eat more fiber tend to be slimmer than those who eat less fiber.
Fiber helps control/prevent diabetes. A German clinical trial reported that eating fiber-enriched bread for only three days improved insulin sensitivity in overweight and obese women by 8%.
Fiber helps prevent heart disease. In a Harvard study of over 40,000 male health professionals, researchers found that a high total dietary fiber intake was linked to a 40% lower risk of coronary heart disease, compared to a low-fiber intake.
Fiber helps your cholesterol. It appears that soluble fiber reduces the absorption of cholesterol in your intestines by binding with bile (which contains cholesterol) and dietary cholesterol so that the body excretes it.
Fiber helps relieve/prevent constipation. Some kids have this problem. It seem all too common.

No comments:

Post a Comment