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5 Recipes to Kick Off the ‘Year of Pulses’

The U.N. has declared 2016 the year of the pulses (that’s beans, lentils and chick peas, FYI). With delicious recipes like these at our fingertips, we’re not going to argue.

While Pantone is in charge of declaring the Colour of the Year, the responsibility for proclaiming the Food of the Year apparently goes to the United Nations. (Or maybe they just got to it first? If we’d have been quicker, could it have been the Year of the Waffle?)

While the U.N. may not exactly have a reputation as a culinary leader, they may be on to something with pulses, its choice for 2016. Pulses—a catchall term for beans and lentils—are protein-packed, inexpensive, sustainably grown and full of amino acids. Even if you’re not going full-on veg for the new year, incorporating some of these magic beans into your diet is going to be good for your heart, good for the planet and good for your wallet. And with delicious recipes like the ones below, pulses prove they’re a friend to foodies, too.

5 Pulse Recipes to Try for 2016


26slowbraised-lentils-bacon1. Slow-Braised Lentils with Double-Smoked Bacon, White Wine and Créme Fraîche 

OK, so the bacon and créme fraîche may not be the ideal accessories for a truly health-conscious meal, but you only live once, right? And this dish is 90 percent lentils, so we feel like that probably balances things out.

Thai Red Lentil Soup with Chilli Oil

2. Thai Red Lentil Soup with Chili Oil

Sourced from the Soup Sisters cookbook, this spicy, creamy soup is one of our most popular recipes of all time (no surprise—it’s from beloved chef Yotam Ottolenghi).


Warm-lentil-and-tomato-salad3. Warm Lentil and Tomato Salad with Cherries and Cashews

This simple, hearty salad is easy to customize: swap in raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, or chopped peaches or apricots instead of the cherries, or mix in spinach, arugula or green onions for an extra dose of something green.

photo by Clinton Hussey
(Photo: Clinton Hussey.)

4. Grilled Corn, Black Bean and Peach Salad

Yes, this is a summer recipe, but it’s the year of pulses—you’ve gotta plan for the future. Start dreaming now of backyard barbeques, and how impressed your friends will be when you pull out this protein-backed salad filled with grilled corn and fresh peaches.


fava bean crostini5. Fava Bean Crostini

Don’t hog all the pulses to yourself: this crostini recipe is the perfect way to share the love while you’re entertaining. (And that vibrant green colour may just make this one of the prettiest appetizer dishes in your repertoire.)

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