In the subject matter of nutrition perhaps the least understood are is protien. There is the eternal quest for foods high in protien and how to add them in to our everyday diet. Whey do we need protein?
A protein is a com plex structure that is made up of smaller units called amino acids. Amino acids are molecules made of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and sometimes sulfur. There are 22 different ones in nature that are used in our bodies to make protein. These proteins make up our organs, bones, tendons, ligaments and blood, and also many of our hormones (insulin, growth hormone), our immune system, our neurotransmitters and all of the enzymes of metabolism, digestion and detoxification.
As a result of the normal wear and tear of daily living the proteins that make up these structures break down and have to be repaired or replaced. If one does not get enough daily high quality dietary protein, these structures do not get repaired. And, if one is trying to increase fitness, strength, endurance or power, the athlete needs increased quantities of quality protein to enhance his existing structure. If he does not one gets diminishing energy, mental irritability, lack of training effect, poor sleep, injury, and illness.
In our experience very few people are getting enough daily quality protein to maintain optimum health and performance. Protein is the key nutrient for recovery and longevity.
Lobia or Black Eyed Peas is an excellent source of protein specially for vegetarians. One serving of black-eyed peas contains 70 calories, making it a low-calorie option when served without additional condiments. Each serving also contains three grams of protein. The beans do not contain any fat or cholesterol.
As with all legumes, black-eyed peas are very good fiber sources, providing 4 grams or 16% of the recommended daily value. There are two types of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Beans contain mostly soluble fiber, which can help decrease blood cholesterol levels and therefore may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Soluble fiber may also help patients with diabetes maintain improved blood sugar levels because the fiber helps to slow the rate of absorption of carbohydrate. It is also a rich source of pottasium, sodium, iron and zinc. I had picked up a couple packs at Whole Foods lasst weekend and I was determined to use it a least twice a week towards my protien intake. This is a simple satvik preparation of Lobia without much oil or too much ingredients, inspired from 1000 Indian Recipes by Neelam Batra.
1 1/2 Cups Lobia or Black EYes Peas.
3 Cups Water.
Salt to taste.
1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
1 Tbsp Ginger Paste.
1/2 tsp Garlic Paste.
1 Green Chilli.
2 Tomatoes Finely chopped.
1/2 cup chopped cilantro.
1 Tbsp Ground Dhania Powder.
2 tsp Kasuri methi.
1/2 tsp Ground Cumin Powder.
1/4 Tsp trurmeric Powder.
1/4 tsp garam masala powder.
1/2 Cup thick Yoghurt.
- If you are using dried black eyes peas, then soak it in water overnight and pressure cook it in salt for one or two whistles. Allow the steam to escape and then remove from the cooker and set aside.Make sure that the beans have cooked well in the pressure else cook it for a couple more minutes.
- Next we prepare the sauce base – add oil to a heavy kadai and when its hot enough, add the cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle and fry in the oil. Quickly add the ginger, garlic, and sliced green chilies and stir fry for a couple more minutes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and the cilantro and cook for about 5-7 minutes until its well cooked and all the waters evaporate. Now add the dry powders – dhania powder, kasuri methi, cumin powder and turmeric and incorporate the powders into the mushy tomatoes and stir in well. This should be done for a minute or two.
- Now reduce the flame to a medium low and slowly add the thick curd to the kadai, stirring the kadai constantly to prevent the curd from breaking up in the heat.
- Remove the sauce from the kadai, set aside and add the boiled soft and creamy lobia or balck eyed peas to the kadai, without too much of the water in which it was cooked, Reserve this water on the side.
- When the peas have warmed up well, add the prepared sauce and the reserved water to adjust the consistency of the gravy. Add only as much water as needed. Simmer the gravy on slow flame for 15 minutes or so. It is important to keep the flame low so the flavours of the sauces permeate the lobia slowly and enhance the flavours of the dish.
- Sprinkle garam masala and chopped cilantro and switch off the flame and keep covered until its ready to be served.
- Serve Rassedar Lobia with Paranthas or Rotis.