French Green Lentils are prized above other lentils for their strong peppery flavor and their firmness, even after cooking. High in fiber and protein like most lentils, french green lentils are usually more expensive than other lentil varieties. They are firm and hold together well after cooking, but they do take a bit longer to cook than other lentils. Lentils take longer to cook in salted or acidic water, so starting them in plain water will reduce cooking times which are usually under 20 minutes.
These choice lentils were originally grown in the volcanic soils of Puy in France, but now they're also grown in North America and Italy. They're especially good in salads since they remain firm after cooking and have a rich flavor. They cook a bit slower than other lentils.
Lentils, a small but nutritionally dense member of the legume family, are a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. Not only do lentils help lower cholesterol, they are of special benefit in managing blood-sugar disorders since their high fiber content prevents blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after a meal. Lentils also provide good to excellent amounts of six important minerals, two B-vitamins, and protein-all with virtually no fat. The calorie cost of all this nutrition is just 230 calories for a whole cup of cooked lentils.
Lentils, like other beans, are rich in dietary fiber, both the soluble and insoluble type. Soluble fiber forms a gel-like substance in the digestive tract that snares bile (which contains cholesterol)and ferries it out of the body. Research studies have shown that insoluble fiber not only helps to increase stool bulk and prevent constipation, but also helps prevent digestive disorders like irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis.
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