Hero Ingredients #1: Pulses

Pulses are the seeds of legumes – plants which produce fruits in the form of a pod (which contains the seed) – but the term pulse refers to the dried seed (as opposed to the fresh seed). All pulses are legumes but not all legumes are pulses  – woooaaah – did you realise it was so complicated? Back to the important stuff…

Our two most versatile products are packed with pulses – in fact both ourThai and our Tandoori Mash-Ups are made up of more than 60% of these potent protein sources. Vitamins, minerals and fibre are also in plentiful supply in the chickpeas and lentils we use to create these products and combined with the other vegetables, herbs and spices they contain – our Mash-Ups are a nutritious and healthy addition to your diet. Lentils and chickpeas are very low in fat in contrast to some other legume and there’s widespread agreement in the nutritional literature (can literature be nutritional?) that they lower blood cholesterol, reduce blood pressure, and produce long lasting energy – better for maintaining blood sugar levels. So no excuses!

Despite being a vegetarian for more than 25 years and a vegan for more than 5 – I am learning everyday…it was only a few years ago that I realised that the red & brown lentils we use (red in the Thai Mash-Up, and brown in the Tandoori) are related – more than that – they are one and the same – the brown ones just have their jacket on! (Yes, I felt a bit silly not to know this…but I bet I’m not the only one?).

At home a couple of years ago we tried growing some of our own – I don’t remember the variety, but I do remember that the quantity we ended up with was little more than a tablespoon…definitely not enough for even one Mash-Up. Another thing about our lentil plants – they were so very delicate…I struggled to imagine how they’d survive in great numbers, without individual attention – so hats off to the dedicated farmers all over the world who grow and harvest this crop.

We had success of a different sort when we had to throw away a big sack of pulses that had gone “out of date” – straight on to the compost heap, they formed a thick mat of sprouts before we dug them in to enrich the soil – still no pulses though!

Not sure there’s many people out there with pulses stories to share…but I was surprised to have a couple myself so you never know…prove me wrong?!!