long beans

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Also Known As

Long podded Cowpea, Snake bean, Yardlong Bean, Choda, Chawli ki subji, Chawli.

Description

Long beans are a type of green vegetable, available throughout the year.it is 12 - 30 inches long, slender generally pale green to dark green colored, depending on the variety. Although red colored variety may also be seen in the market at times. Each pod consists of small edible peas within, which are light green in color.The crisp, tender pods are eaten both fresh and cooked.

How to Select

long beans are commonly available in all vegetable markets and food malls. They are at their best when young and slender. While buying, check the freshness by trying to break one of the beans in to two halves. The crisper the bean , the higher the freshness. Avoid buying the wilted or dried ones or those having brown spots or holes showing insect infestation.The plants are susceptible to black bean aphids, spider mites, nematodes, and mosaic viruses. Aphids, particularly the black bean aphid are drawn to the pods of this plant. Bean fly is the main pest causing small yellow spots on the leaves.
So check the qality before buying.

Culinary Uses

· You can make a subji out of long beans by cutting them in to small pieces.
· They are used in stir-fries in Chinese cuisine.
· In Malaysian cuisine they are often stir-fried with chillies and shrimp paste (sambal) or used in cooked salads.
· Another popular and healthy option is to chop them into very short cubes and fry them in an omelette.
· Tasty Szechuan Long bean can be prepared by mixing stir fried long beans with soy sauce, cooked red chilli peppers, ginger paste and sugar salt to taste.
· Cashew Curry can be made by adding curry powder in coconut milk and adding deeply toasted cashews and a handful of long beans with tiny cauliflower florets and little bit of tofu.

How to Store

Long beans remain fresh for at least 3 days at room temperature. But due to loss of moisture, it starts becoming wilt. Hence store it under refrigeration temperature with relative humidity of 80- 90 %. this will last its freshness for around 5-6 days. The pods can be removed and deep freezed for around 20-25 days as well.

Health Benefits

Long Bean is considered as an energy food.
· Long beans is a low calorie vegetable and hence can be consumed by those on weight loss.
· It has good amounts of Vitamin A as well as fair amounts of Vitamin C.
· Being a green vegetable, it is rich in phyto chemicals and anti oxidants, thus plays an important role in fighting cancer and delays aging.
· They offer cardiovascular protection and help lower blood pressure.
· They have anti inflammatory effects and relive inlammation in arthritis and asthma.

Chopped long beans

Wash the long beans gently. With a knife, cut the two extremes, which are inedible. Place the long beans in bunches horizontally on a chopping board and cut them vertically using a sharp knife. Try to keep it equidistant as possible. Chop it by cutting it into small pieces approximately ¼ inch in diameter, although the chopped food doesn't need to be exactly the same size. If the recipe calls for the ingredients to be "coarsely chopped," make the pieces slightly larger. Similarly if you want "finely chopped " long beans, cut it into still smaller size.

Sliced long beans

Wash the long beans gently. With a knife, slice the beans from top to bottom in the vertical direction. If the recipe calls for the ingredients to be "thickly sliced," make the pieces slightly larger. Similarly if you want "thinly sliced "long beans, cut it into still smaller size.

Long beans cubes

Wash the long beans gently. With a knife, cut it into square shaped pieces approximately one inch in diameter vertically, although the cubes doesn't need to be exactly the same size. Try to keep it equidistant as possible. You can increase or decrease the size of the cubes to small, medium or large depending on the recipe.

Boiled long beans

Wash the long beans gently. Now cut them into desired length, may be cubes or chopped. Boil minimum water in a dekchi. Add the cut beans to the boiling water and lid the dekchi to avoid nutrient loss. Once the beans start turning lighter in color and can be smashed easily on pressing, they can be considered boiled and cooked. Alternatively you can pressure cook them till 1 whistle to boil them. Boiled long beans is used in preparing a curry.

Blanched long beans

Blanching is the process of removing the outer thin skin layer from the vegetable, without removal of the pulp. For blanching long beans, heat water to the first boil. Now immerse the washed beans to the boiling water for just less than a minute. Drain out the hot water and remove the outer peel of the beans. See to it that the inner surface of the bean is not torn. The nutritive value is not lost and the green color is even more enhanced.Blanched long beans can be used in sauteed salads.




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