Cancer Fighting Kitchen: Beans and a Recipe for Cannellini Bean Dip with Kalamata Olives
Resistant starch, or starch not digested in the small intestine, is used by healthful bacteria in the colon to produce short-chain fatty acids, which seem to protect colon cells. Foods containing folate help reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer probably because of folate's role in healthy cell division and repair of damaged cells. A recent study ranked beans amount the top ten food richest in antioxidants, including variety of phytochemicals, such as triterpenoids, flavonoids, inositol, protease inhibitors and sterols.
Nutritionists recommend eating at least 3 cups of beans a week and that is a lot of beans, so fitting them into the diet can be a bit tricky. We make bean dips and hummus. You can also mash beans and spice them as you like to use as a sandwich spread. Kidney beans, cannellini beans and chickpea are good in salads. And then there are chili and bean soup. If you pair beans with rice, together they make a complete protein. A half-cup of beans is about 105 to 145 calories.
Here is a recipe for a yummy dip that we use with celery as well as whole wheat pita, corn or bean chips.
Cannellini Bean Dip with Kalamata Olives
1 15 oz can of cannellini beans (or 2 cups cooked)
1/2 tea. minced garlic
3 Tab. olive oil
2 Tab. water
2 Tab lemon juice
1/2 tea. salt
pinch of cayenne
1/4 cup sliced pitted kalamata olives
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Add more salt, if desired.
Homemade Pita or Corn Chips
Cut each pita bread into 4 triangles and separate each triangle into two halves at the fold, or, if you are using corn tortillas, stack a dozen tortillas and then cut them into 4 wedges.
Spread wedges in a single layer on baking sheets (for the pita bread, put rough side up.) Spray lightly with non-stick spray. Sprinkle with salt. Bake at 400 deg. F until light golden and crisp, about 8-15 minutes.
One serving us 6 corn chips or 4 pita chips.