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 Besan Is Good For You

  Last Updated : Mar 29,2018

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8 Health Benefits of Besan, 9 Healthy Besan Recipes

Get two health-conscious people talking for a while, and they will touch upon topics like diet and cooking, in specific about grains and flours. Inevitably, one of them raises the doubt about whether besan is good for health or not! Next time you are part of such a discussion, you can confidently answer that yes, besan is good for health.

Besan is super-fine flour prepared from pure chana dal. For some recipes, especially sweets, coarse besan flour might be used. This gluten-free flour has an earthy aroma and binding nature, which make it a key ingredient in the preparation of several traditional savouries and sweets, including laddoo, onion pakoda, vegetable bhajiyas, and more. It is used all over the country to make tasty sweets – the Besan Laddoo of North India and the Mysore Pak of South India are two world-famous examples!

Besan, also known as Chickpea Flour, Bengal gram flour or chana dal flour.  Pure, unadulterated besan gives you a good dose of several nutrients. Let’s set forth some points about the health benefits of pure besan ...

8 Health Benefits of Besan

1. It has more protein than wheat flour. 100 grams of besan has 20 grams of protein, as compared to 12 grams in whole wheat flour.
2. Besan has more good fat than whole wheat flour. Most of the fat (about 70%) contained in besan are healthy unsaturated fats, which help to lower your cholesterol levels. 100 grams of besan has 5.6 grams of good fat while whole wheat flour has only 1.7 grams.
3. Rich in complex carbohydrates and with a low glycemic index, besan is good for diabetics too. 100 grams of besan has 59.8 grams of carbs, while wheat flour has 69.4 grams.
4. High in Folate or folic acid, which is important for rapid growth, besan is good to have before and during pregnancy. 100 grams of besan has 147.5 mcg of folic acid.
5. Besan is a good source of Thiamine, which is essential for glucose metabolism, and maintains proper nerve, muscle and heart function.
6. It also has a good amount of Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine), which helps in the metabolism of proteins and fats in the body.
7. This tasty flour is rich in mineral like magnesium (130 mg), iron (5.3 mg) and phosphorus (331 mg). Magnesium Rich Recipes helps in the metabolism of Calcium and Potassium, and maintains nerve functions. Iron is an important component of haemoglobin, the substance in red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to all parts of the body. Phosphorus, along with calcium is needed for healthy bones, skin and hair. Such a lot of goodness in besan!
8. Besan is great for those following a gluten free diet. It contains no wheat, so you can use it comfortably.

Here is a collection of yummy recipes using besan, not only for our gluten-sensitive friends, but for everybody who wishes to harness the health benefits of besan.

Happy Cooking!

Health Benefits Of Besan

 by Tarla Dalal
Khaman dhokla, a famous snack sold in every street of Gujarat, it is no longer restricted to that region -- it is readily available in every part of the country. People love these yummy dhoklas as a breakfast, snack or as a farsan (savoury accompaniment) in the lunch or dinner menu. We made it in a jiffy using besan, but it can also be made by soaking and grinding chana dal. These versatile dhoklas can be steamed in a traditional dhokla steamer or in a microwave oven. These dhoklas can be used to make variants like Amiri Khaman , Rasawala Dhokla and Pav Bhaji Dhokla .
Pitla is a popular accompaniment that Maharashtrians never tire of having! Once you try it, you will want to have it too, as often as possible. Made with minimal and commonly available ingredients, the Besan Pitla is a quick and easy accompaniment that goes well with rice , rotis and puri . Here, besan dissolved in water, is cooked with onions, green chillies and an aromatic tempering. Just ensure you have the Maharashtrian Besan Pitla immediately on preparation because besan tends to thicken upon cooling.
 by Tarla Dalal
Cauliflower greens have a crunchy texture and fresh flavour that lends itself very well to this unique pitla. While you might frequently prepare methi or plain besan pitla, adding iron-rich cauliflower greens to the preparation adds to the iron and vitamin C content of besan. Cauliflower Greens Pitla will surely make your skin glow by improving blood circulation. Serve it immediately with whole wheat bhakri.
 by Tarla Dalal
Khandvi is a popular snack amongst Gujaratis, especially the kids! Nobody can hide their love for this delicious savoury made of gram flour and curds, tempered with mustard seeds. At the same time, none can deny that it is a difficult item to prepare! Be patient, and remember to cook the paste slowly and completely till thick. Also, take care to roll the khandvi lightly; and temper well. Have a go at other popular Gujarati farsans like Dakor Na Gota , Nylon Khaman Dhokla and Patra .
Methi Thalipeeth is a traditional Maharashtrian breakfast, made with a mix of flours, aromatic fenugreek leaves and a touch of spice powders. It has a rustic and homely texture and a really inspiring flavour. It is nutritious and filling – a good way to kick-start your day. The best part is that it has a well-balanced flavour on its own and needs just a cup of curds for serving. Make sure you cook the Methi Thalipeeth till it is slightly crisp, so that you get a nice aroma, flavour and texture. To make the dish more exciting, serve it with accompaniments like the Sukhi Lehsun Chutney and Dry Peanut Chutney Powder .
 by Tarla Dalal
Gram flour dumplings flavoured with dry spices, steamed and then dunked into a yoghurt based curry is a traditional Rajasthani speciality. Enjoy this dish either with puris or steamed rice.
Gattas or "gatte" are gram flour dumplings that are spiced up with dry masalas and then steamed and cut into small bite sized pieces. They are used to make a wide variety of dishes like Gatte ki Subzi , Gatte ka Pulao etc. This dish is made using a yoghurt based gravy and dry masalas to create a mouth-watering recipe that will complement both rice and parathas .
This simple and delicious recipe is a real treat for diabetics and weight watchers . Chaklis, the popular Indian snack, is usually deep-fried and contains loads of calories and if made in a South Indian style it makes use of high glycemic index ingredient – rice flour too. Here's how to make them using besan (which being low in glycemic index, assists in controlling blood sugar levels) and 1 tsp of oil to near perfection by baking them in an oven. Munch on them at anytime of the day when hunger strikes.
 by Tarla Dalal
When we think of Indian pancakes, dosa and chilla are two of the first options that come to our mind. While dosa is a taken-for-granted breakfast in South India, chilla is an equally popular option as you go up North, especially in Gujarat and Rajasthan. The Besan Chilla is very convenient and easy to make as the batter does not require any soaking, grinding or fermentation. Just mix together besan and a couple of readily-available spice powders, and you are ready to cook the pancakes. Make sure you cook the chilla well with sufficient oil till it is golden brown; otherwise it might have a raw smell. Once done, serve immediately with green chutney. You can enjoy the Besan Chilla for breakfast or as an evening snack .
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