Hummus has been a staple of the Middle Eastern diet for centuries, but it’s not until the end of the 1900s that it made its mark in the United States. Today, just about every household in America consumes hummus, whether made at home or store-bought. Of course, it’s no surprise that the famous dip has become so popular: it’s super delicious, incredibly healthy and easy to make.
Cannellini beans are incredibly soft when cooked, which is why they lend themselves so perfectly to dips. Here the somewhat bland beans are puréed with garlic and lemon juice — then, for a major flavor boost, topped with pan-fried fresh mint. (And does this dip ever turn out flavorful!)
Tacos! Who doesn’t love tacos? This traditional Mexican dish has certainly become a beloved American food, and it’s easy to see why. Tacos are incredibly versatile (they can be stuffed with just about anything), they’re easy to make, they’re nutritious and, most of all of course, they’re incredibly delicious.
French green lentils are the little jewels of legumes. They’re nutritious, delicate, slightly nutty and incredibly delicious.
Best of all, they cook quickly, require no soaking time and hold on to their shape once cooked.
Every kitchen should have a jar of these tiny jewels on hand.
French green lentils are superb on their own, as a side dish, in stews or in soups like this spinach-lentil soup with saffron and manchego; but they also make the perfect addition to salads – their earthy flavor and soft texture contrasting marvelously with the crunchy greens.
Here the lentils are served with intensely-flavored baked beets, crisp spinach leaves and a minty yogurt dressing.
The flavors work magnificently together and the nutritious lentils transform this salad into a robust, mouthwatering, one-stop meal.
Although I’ve created many recipes for different kinds of chili, the one I love most is this pinto bean chili with pan-roasted spices. Dry-roasting cumin and coriander seeds in a hot pan gives these two spices a depth and nuttiness that permeates the dish. As I hand-grind the roasted spices in a mortar, the whole kitchen comes alive with their intense aroma. (Any recipe that starts this way, in my book, is a good dish!)