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Talk to me about pulses. 17mo DS loves them...

(16 Posts)
HolidaysQueen Wed 09-Sep-09 16:01:32

So my 17mo DS is starting to go through an "I hate veg" phase and is being really picky about them. However he seems to totally love pulses - munches through lentils, baked beans, hummus, chickpeas, any soup based on pulses etc.

I use them in my cooking but I don't feel very knowledgeable about them, and I only have a few recipes that I do, so I have a few questions:

- Is it true that a portion of pulses can count towards the 5 a day for veg?
- Are they really an adequate replacement protein for meat or do I need to do something clever like give him lots of types?
- Do you have any good recipes I can try for DS?

TrillianAstra Wed 09-Sep-09 16:11:56

A portion of pulses can count for one of your 5 a day, but only one, even if you have chickpeas and lentils and baked beans and kindey beans, etc.

Overmydeadbody Wed 09-Sep-09 17:16:08

what Trillian said about one of your 5 a day.

Yes they are adequate replacement for protein provided he also gets dairy protein. Is he vegetarian? If not, then as a regular substitute for meat it is fine.

Green lentils with onion, garlic and spinach is a lovely main course and goes well served with rice.

Overmydeadbody Wed 09-Sep-09 17:17:54

Lentil Dahl is lovely

Butter bean casserole

Chilli con carne

minervaitalica Wed 09-Sep-09 17:23:12

Pulses can replace meat, but I do not think they provide all necessary aminoacids by themselves, so I believe they have to be supplemented by things like dairy etc.

- Soup made of borlotti beans, celery, carrot and onion (you can whizz it), with added pearl barley
- Chickpea or lentil curry. Fry onion, carrot and any other veg you like, add a tablespoon of mild curry paste, chickpeas/lentils and a can of coconut milk. Again, you can whizz the veg at the beginning if you want to hide them
- Make guacamole, but instead of using avocadoes as the base use cooked broad beans. Serve with pittas/tortillas etc
- Quesadillas: put tomato sauce, cheese and beans (red kidney works well) in a tortilla, fold over and warm up to melt the cheese inside.
- Mixed pulses stew in tomato sauce with smoked paprika if you want to add a new flavour. Serve with boiled potatoes, polenta or rice
- Risotto with peas. Make risotto base with shallots, add frozen peas, complete the cooking with meat or veg stock, season and complete mantecatura with parmesan cheese and butter.

I hope this helps!

stressedHEmum Wed 09-Sep-09 18:36:06

The way to make a complete protein in a vegetarian meal is to serve complementary proteins. There are 2 ways to do this, either:

1) beans/pulses with grains
2)dairy with grains.

Pulses with dairy isn't a complementary mix, so you will be getting double doses of some amino acids and none at all of others. Combining beans or lentils with rice, barley, pasta or bread will give a full protein. This can be substituted for meat at every meal where you need a protein dish.

I have been a vegetarian for 30 years and am still alive and kicking, so it must be alright!

You could try:
lentil curry with rice
mediterranean beans with rice
lentils with onions, carrots, garlic and sage
hummus and pittas
lentil stew with bread or corn chips
pinto beans with corn bread
spicy chick peas with flat bread
hoppin john with rice
lentil tacos
lentil sloppy joes
bean and ham soup and bread
chick pea and chorizo soup
lentil and barley soup
minestrone macaroni (pasta with green beans, chick peas and kidney beans with tomatoes, onions and garlic)

Hope this helps

Overmydeadbody Wed 09-Sep-09 18:45:02

The thing is, it doesn't really matter if you don't get a complete protein in one meal, as long as you eat a varied and balanced diet with enough food groups throughout the course of a day or week

Hence why most vegetarians are just as healthy and get just as much protein as meat eaters.

Brilliant recipe ideas from miner and Stressed.

HolidaysQueen Thu 10-Sep-09 07:58:04

Wow - some great ideas! Thanks

We're not vegetarians, but DH and I have realised we like pulses a lot, and DS does, so I think we'll start to do a lot more. I just wanted to make sure that I didn't have to do anything complicated around protein if DS had a few completely meat-free days per week. I know it's not a problem for us, but I never quite know what rules are the same and what are different for little ones!

Good that they count as one of the 5, if only one. I wasn't counting them at all so immediately we are doing much better on our veg count

The silly sausage positively adores onions/leeks/celery/carrots when chopped finely as a base (he makes sure he picks up every last piece) and loves the taste of most veggies (will eat any kind of soup) but he just seems to have issues with bigger chunks! So I'm hoping it's just a passing phase about being in control, rather than it meaning he hates veg forever. In the meantime I'll get cracking on all these ideas so that we all have something new and exciting in our diet!

minervaitalica Thu 10-Sep-09 10:06:35

Hoppin John with rice?

Is that a code for something else?

stressedHEmum Thu 10-Sep-09 10:22:55

Hoppin John. It's not a euphemismwink. It's spiced black eyed beans cooked with tomatoes, onions, garlic and, if you like, peppers, with chopped spring onions scattered on top.

Overmydeadbody is right. You don't need to get complete protein at every meal, as long as you eat a good, varied diet. My kids eat veggie most days and I always try to give them some kind of complete protein every couple of days, just to be on the safe side, but I don't get paranoid about it, as long as they eat lots of different combinations of foods.

Laquitar Thu 10-Sep-09 11:34:37

Ah i was going to ask about the hoppin john too grin

And since you are here [smle] what is the lentil sloppy joes?

stressedHEmum Thu 10-Sep-09 12:55:55

lentil sloppy joes

2 tins green lentils, drained
1 tin condensed cream of tomato soup or 1/2pint of thick homemade creamy tomato sauce
1 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped (or a good handful of frozen peppers)
1tspn chopped garlic
2tblspns vinegar
1tspn mustard
1tspn chilli powder
2tblspn sugar
oil for frying
bread rolls

Fry the onion, garlic, celery and peppers in a little oil until softened. Add chilli and mustard and cook for a couple of minutes. Add lentils, soup or sauce, vinegar and sugar. Mix well and simmer for about 10 minutes until hot through and thickened and the flavours have blended. Serve in rolls. BE warned, they are called sloppy joes for a reason.

HM creamy tomato sauce.

4tsblspns butter
4tblspns flour
1/4pint milk
1 carton passata
1tspn sugar
pinch salt and pepper

make a roux with butter and flour. Stir milk in slowly and allow to bubble for a couple of minutes. Slowly whisk in passata and simmer until thickened. Stir in salt, pepper and sugar. You can use this as a substitute for condensed tomato soup in recipes or you can eat it poured over mashed potatoes and topped with cheese. It makes good potato volcanoes for little kids.

FaintlyMacabre Thu 10-Sep-09 13:01:37

I make a vast batch of homemade baked beans (with lots of veg as well) which I freeze in tiny portions. DS loves these with toast for a quick lunch- not on toast, though, that would be wrong.

I can post the recipe if you'd like it.

phdlife Thu 10-Sep-09 13:09:51

I use green lentils sometimes as a substitute for mince in garden cottage pie and bolognese.

also when my ds was that age he was quite happy to snack on plain cooked lentils, served cold. (come to think of it today he snacked on cold leftover lentils, but they were part of a flavoured dish.

Laquitar Thu 10-Sep-09 19:21:48

Thanks Stressed

Sounds good! I am going to try it.

soupmaker Thu 10-Sep-09 22:12:59

We love pulses in our house too. Have you tried split pea and ham soup - loads of veg and I always include some pancetta too - whizzed until smooth after cooking. Sausage casseroles made with red lentils or sometimes with green puy lentils - yummy. Our 18mo DD is mad for them. Red lentils make great base to pasta sauce too.

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