I've said this before, peanuts are very popular in our house! They are a delicious snack by themselves, as part of a snack, in a salad, and even with veggies. We add peanuts to dals and amtis and they make an appearance in sweet foods like peanut chikki and ladu. And, the American favorite peanut butter-jelly sandwich makes for a quick lunch at least once a week.
But did you know that peanuts are not really nuts? They are legumes from the Fabaceae family. More like peas, really! The peanut plant flowers above ground but develops its pods underground. That is why in many parts of the world, they are known as groundnuts.
Peanuts are known to contain the good monounsaturated fats and are a rich source of protein. Since they are a plant food, they contain no cholesterol. They are said to contribute to healthy brains with good blood circulation, mainly because they contain Vitamin B3, a memory boosting food. Studies have shown that including peanuts in one's diet reduces those nasty triglyceride levels. Peanuts are also rich in arginine which, according to Chinese medicine, is said to slow aging. Now don't all rush out and buy up all the peanuts in the world as this is a controversial topic!
Regardless, peanuts in small quantities make for a healthier snack. So include some peanuts with that apple you should eat every day!
Interesting Peanut Facts
Peanuts for the Heart
The Peanut Institute
Some recipes from other food blogs:
Spicy Nutty Cluster Beans
Faux sabudana khichadi
and some outstanding pictures, too.