Merry Christmas and happy #scrumptioussunday everyone!
This week was my first week on the #pulsepledge. What are pulses you may ask? Well, they are the seeds in the legume family which are edible.
In more clear terms, they are dried legumes like chickpeas, lentils, beans, and peas.
And what's this pulse pledge? I found a link to this website pulse pledge, in an email I received. It's a pledge to eat pulses once at week for 10 weeks. Given this new plant based lifestyle I'm embracing, I wanted to learn how to cook dried pulses in more creative ways.
Sure, I can open up a can of black beans and chickpeas like nobody's business, but I'd never really prepared dried lentils or dried split peas myself. Yes, I've eaten them plenty of times, but they were already prepared for me. I was afraid to make beans from scratch. Why? I'm not sure exactly, just chalk it up to one of my many personal quirks and eccentricities. But, maybe I was just too lazy to deal with the steps it took to make beans.....soak overnight, rinse, sort, cook for long periods of time even after the pulses have soaked, etc.....so, I just talked myself right out of learning to prep them. No longer! One of my core desired feelings for this upcoming year is to be adventurous.....so bring on the pulse adventures from my kitchen!
Did you know it takes just as long to cook dried lentils and split peas as it does to make a pot of rice or quinoa on the stovetop??
Yep, I didn't either!
Maybe that's why week 1 of the pulse pledge challenge is to use split peas--it's a wonderful introduction into this world of affordable, nutritious, and sustainable legumes. Note: This isn't an ad for their site btw. I'm truly interested in expanding my culinary chops and learning right along with everyone else taking the challenge. So, I'm just sharing what I'm learning with y'all, that's it. Let's get to it!
So, my first intro into split pea world was by using none other than my stylish slow cooker. Presently, I'm totally in love with sweet potatoes and the smokiness of chipotle peppers....so I thought why not make a soup/stew with split peas using those flavors? Turns out, the people at the pulse pledge site thought of a slow cooker stew already....but with meaty kielbasa and more earthy spices like turmeric and ginger. So, I came up with my own variation.
My dad's response, as I was stirring the final product, "Wow, that looks like what your grandmother used to make", speaking about his late mother. What an awesome compliment to receive. If I'm half as good of a cook as her, I'd be happy. Ja-Ja (pronounced jay jay, the name we all called her), I hope I did you proud.
As for y'all, I hope you'll get into the kitchen to try this flavorful and heartwarming stew. It's a good one to share with family and friends during this festive time of the year. It's also economical, and satisfies week one's split pea challenge.
Now, let's learn about week 2. Would you like to join? Click here and let's go on the pulse journey together!
adapted from Pulse Pledge