We eat beans a lot at our house because they are packed full of nutrients, high in fiber, and are very low in fat and calories. Basically they fill you up so you don’t want to eat a lot of other stuff that might not be as good for you. This Red Bean Cake recipe fits the bill perfectly!
Red Bean Cakes
1 Tbsp of water
1 small red onion
1 small red pepper chopped and seeded
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 large garlic clove minced (I use a garlic press)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste (we use double, we like it spicy)
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
2 cans (12oz) of red beans (pinto, kidney or other red ones) drained and rinsed
1 cup cold cooked brown rice
2 Tbsp fresh minced parsley
1 egg white
1/2 cup spelt flakes (or ground oats if you don’t have spelt flakes)
Heat the water in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, celery garlic, spices. Cook, stirring occassionally, until vegetables are softened. Season with the sea salt and pepper to taste – set aside to cool (VERY IMPORTANT – if you do not cool this mixture, it will make the batter to runny too form into cakes)
In a food processor combine the beans, rice parsley, cooked vegetable mixture, egg white and spelt flakes. Pulse to blend, leaving some texture in tact. If you find the mixture to runny, add more spelt flakes. If you find it too thick, add a bit of water. Shape into patties and set aside.
Melt a bit of coconut oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Add the bean cakes, turning once, until browned on both sides, about 7-10 minutes. Keep them warm in the oven on “low” while you prepare the rest of your meal, or you can choose to serve them with Creamy Almond Sauce.
Also seen in the photo: steamed kale with hemp hearts and a small mixed greens salad.
How much fiber do you need daily? Are you getting enough?
When you first start adding beans into your daily nutritional plan you may find your body takes a while to adjust to the added fiber. You will likely experience more gas than normal, and yes increased flatulence, or farting. NOTE: this is perfectly normal!!! Most people in North America eat very little fiber. The Mayo Clinic recommends women eat 21-25g a day and men should consume 30-38g of fiber daily. The average North American though only gets about 12-15g a day, less than half the recommend daily amounts. This is staggering.
When we eat at home, we eat a 90% vegetarian diet. I often get asked “where do you get your protein”? I can tell you that a bowl of black bean soup has the same amount of protein as an 8oz steak. BUT the beans have about 15g of fiber, are high in minerals like iron, calcium, and potassium and are also LOW in fat and have NO cholesterol. The steak on the other hand – while it does have protein and some iron – is HIGH in saturated fat, cholesterol and has ZERO fiber.
Are you aware that all meat has NO fiber? None, nada, zip, zero, zilch. Now while I’m not suggesting you eat vegetarian – I am suggesting that most of us could stand to eat more fiber on a daily basis. Beans are a great way to get heaps of fiber and they taste great.
Fiber is a necessary part of a healthy diet. It helps act like a broom by moving the food along in our intestines faster. Most people don’t like to talk about bowel movements, but you should have one per day at the minimum. Actually one for every meal you eat – food in = food out. So if you are not THAT regular, try these bean cakes and the other recipes this month and see if we can’t get you in the bathroom a bit more often.
To your good colon health!
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Red Bean Cakes Photo Credit: Her View Photography