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The Difference Between Lentils and Beans

What are you going to have for dinner tonight? Tacos with spinach and black beans? Risotto with brown lentils? If you aren’t sure how you’d possibly cook either dish or even know the difference between the main ingredients of beans or lentils, it’s time to get in the know.



What is a Lentil?

Lentils are the part of the Plantae Kingdom and belong to “Fabaceae” family.

Lentil or Dal (in Hindi) is very popular in South Asian countries especially in the subcontinent ( Pakistan, India & Bangladesh). Its common man food, eaten with the rice or roti (a kind of bread made with wheat flour). It is considered one of the oldest food on the planet.

The word lentil is derived from Latin Lens, no wonder they are called Lens culinaris in Latin.

It can help with the digestion as its rich in fiber and essential amino acids. Because of fiber can be helpful in weight loss also. Other than fiber it has protein, electrolytes, and potassium. It can be a good source of protein for vegans.

In old days people used to consume lentils with the husk. But with the time as human beings invented machines, we started eating without husk. If you want to have the benefits of fiber do not remove the husk.

Types of Lentils

There are so many types out there, such as black-eyed peas, pigeon peas, kidney beans, mung beans, black lentils, brown lentils, yellow lentils, red lentilsFrench green lentils, and a host of other peas, legumes, grains, and seeds out there that are a great source of dietary fiber. To understand more, you need to learn about what makes beans and lentils different and what makes them similar to get a better handle on how to cook with either or both of these incredible ingredients.Lentils and Beans

Are Lentils Beans?

There are a few immediately noticeable differences between lentils and beans. For one, most beans are larger than lentils and beans also tend to hold their shape better when they’re cooked. This means you’re more likely to see bean tacos than you are lentil tacos. Other than these basic culinary differences, though, this isn’t an easy question to answer.

In short, lentils and beans are members of the same legume family. They’re both legumes and, more specifically, they’re both grain legumes, meaning they’re grown primarily in a controlled agricultural setting as a food product for humans and, to a much lesser extent, animals. Things get trickier from there, however.

Yes, both beans and lentils are legumes, but whether a lentil is actually a different class of legume from a bean is a matter of interpretation. Some people might even classify lentils a type of bean, meaning there is effectively no difference between the two.dried beans

This is one of those vegetable/fruit type questions in the sense that the difference between a lentil and a bean is mostly subtle and may not actually matter all that much in terms of how we eat and enjoy these healthy plant-derived foods. Think of it this way. If you ask most people whether a cucumber is a fruit, they’d say no. It’s not particularly sweet and we tend to eat them in salads and with savory foods, which is how most people think of vegetables.

However, cucumbers grow from flowers and bear seeds, which technically makes them fruit. The same goes for pumpkins, tomatoes, eggplant, and other produce we tend to think of as vegetables. Lines are blurry as far as these classifications are concerned and it might not be entirely useful to draw hard category boxes around either lentils or beans.

So, really, the difference between lentils and beans is a matter of interpretation that may not be worth debate. Far more important than understanding which category each falls into is trying to understand what these foods are, why they’re good for you and how you can cook them to enjoy their health benefits.

What are the Similarities?

Perhaps a better question is asking how beans and lentils are similar. Since they belong to the same family and can be argued to essentially be one and the same, beans and lentils have a lot in common. Both are the protein-packed seed of a legume plant. Beans of all kinds and different kinds of lentils grow in seed pods and are harvested by removing the pod from the plant and, in most cases, removing the seed from the pod.

Both of these vegetables are also extremely healthy and affordable sources of both protein and fiber. The combination of protein and fiber means that eating beans or lentils helps you feel fuller on less food, which can be great for those who are trying to or need to eat modest portions for any reason, whether it’s motivated by health or financial necessity.

That’s part of the reason why beans and rice is such a great meal for those who are on a strict budget, especially if brown rice is chosen over white. The combination of the amino acids, soluble fiber and insoluble fiber in both beans and brown rice makes for complete proteins and gut-healthy fiber that is filling with minimal fat. The same goes for lentils, too, which is why Indian dishes such as daal, which is made from red lentils, are a great option for those who are getting sick of regular beans and rice.rice

Another important similarity—there are several types of beans and there are several types of lentils. There are way more legume types classified under the “bean” category than the “lentil” category, but they both offer plenty of room for exploration in terms of size, shape, color, texture, and taste.

How to Buy Lentils and Beans for Cooking and Eating

Though there are a lot of similarities between the two and they may, indeed, even be the same thing, shopping for different kinds of beans and lentils brings up some important differences you’ll want to become familiar with if you want to cook with these ingredients.

Dried

Dried beans

You can find just about every kind of bean or lentil available in dried form, often for sale in ultra-affordable bulk quantities at most grocery stores. Lentils are smaller and cook much faster than most dried beans, which means they can cook without pre-soaking. Dried beans such as kidney or black beans usually need to be soaked before they’re cooked to reduce overall cooking time, though some culinary experts disagree with the need for soaking. Try it yourself and see if you agree!

Canned

Both brown lentils and various types of beans, including kidney, navy, cannellini, and pinto, are available as a canned and preserved vegetable. Though they’re theoretically more expensive than dried beans, if water and gas, and electricity are expensive where you live, the cost to rinse, soak, and cook dried beans may even out with the cost of canned. Softer red lentils aren’t usually available in cans, though, and due to their small size, canned brown lentils often seem quite mushy.

Fresh

Borlotti, fava, and lima beans and the kind you might find sold fresh—as in just picked, straight from the plant, still in their pods—at a farmer’s market. It is highly unlikely that you’d find lentils sold fresh at a farmer’s market unless you live in a very agriculturally diverse area.

Roasted or Cooked

Roasted chickpeas

Roasted chickpeas and fava beans are gaining popularity as a snack that stays fresh because it’s been dried out and preserved. Lentils aren’t likely to get the same treatment as a grain, though you may find some crisped lentils in their pods sold as a salty snack. These lentil crisps deliver a surprisingly healthy level of fiber and protein compared to similar crunchy, salty snack items like potato chips. However, most people don’t have the ability to make crisped lentils at home while anyone with an oven and some time can make roasted chickpeas and fava beans.

Best Oven Mitts Reviewed for the 2019- Unbiased Review

Cooking, baking, and grilling involve more than just preparing meals. Time spent in the kitchen or over the grill can be an incredibly fun and creative process. It can also provide a great way for families and friends to commiserate and bond. It can also be a perilous time where severe burns and other injuries are lurking around every corner.

The use of a high-quality oven mitt is a perfect way to safeguard yourself and your loved ones from experiencing a burn or other cooking-related injury. When trying to choose the best oven mitts available, it is important to carefully research and test a wide variety of styles and options. The process of searching for the best mitt for your specific needs can be an overwhelming and expensive experience since there are currently so many different options currently available in today's market.

Oven Mitt Buying Guide

Oven mitts are an indispensable item needed in every kitchen, whether you are a baker, a chef, or a casual home cook. We wanted to find the best oven gloves on the market to be used in your home. After hours of delicious researching, testing, and of course, cleaning the highest rated mitts available on the market.

How to Choose an Oven Mitt

First and foremost, the mitt is an imperative item in protecting your skin from being burned when handling pots, pans, and a wide variety of other cooking utensils. However, discriminating buyers need to consider other purchase points as well. There are five fundamental factors when considering which oven glove would be the best fit for your kitchen needs. These factors include the following essential elements.

  • Heat protection: This is obviously the most important aspect. If the mitt can’t take the heat of your kitchen, it needs to get out.
  • Maneuverability: The glove you purchase needs to allow you to easily maneuver around the kitchen or grill so that you are safely able to handle a variety of cookware.
  • Durability: We want to select a product that will stand the test of longevity.
  • Aesthetics: The look and design of a mitt is a fun element that can let your personality shine through.
  • Affordability: Pricing is also an important part of selecting the best item.

Why a Quality Oven Mitt is Essential?

Whether you love to cook, bake, or grill, an oven glove is one of the most important accessories in any kitchen from home cook to pro chef. Cookware is typically composed of aluminum, cast iron, Pyrex, among other high-quality elements because they are an excellent conductor of heat. This is a great thing for your food, but not so ideal for your sensitive skin.

In order to safeguard the skin, a layer of protection, in the form of an oven mitt, is imperative. Years ago, people would just grab a nearby dish towel to pull out their piping hot casserole from the hot. This often resulted in first and second-degree skin burns, as well as many casseroles lying broken on the floor after being dropped because they were far too hot to be picked up using a flimsy towel.

The old-fashioned potholders used by 1950’s housewives weren’t much better. They were poorly constructed squares consisting of quilted cotton fabric, often stuffed with batting material that is quite easy to catch on fire. They offered little protection to the forearms, wrists, and backs of hands. The models available today are a far cry from these archaic, flammable potholders.

Multitasking

Oven mitts aren’t just for hauling casseroles out of the oven. In addition to handling hot cookware, they can be used for many other purposes. Grilling, tending a fire while camping, unscrewing a hot light bulb, or keeping hot dishes from burning a wooden surface such as a table, are all great times to whip out your oven glove.

Material Matters 

Gone are the days of cotton being king of the mitts. Technology has advanced and allowed for high tech options such as silicone to become more common in the construction of oven mitts. Silicone allows for the withstanding of higher temperatures, well over 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It also ensures a steady grip on kitchenware surfaces, reducing the likelihood of dropped food.

Getting into Shape

In order to adequately protect skin, a quality mitt needs to envelop the hand. It should also have a cuff to protect the wrist and at least part of the forearm. There are options in nearly every color imaginable to suit any kitchen décor. There are also fun options available that can put your interests or sense of humor at the forefront of the cooking experience.

Cooking Can be Costly

For most folks, the price is a factor when selecting an oven mitt. However, it shouldn’t be the most important one. There are plenty of options available in every price range that will be suitable for a plethora of needs. For our research purposes, we strived to find choices that performed as well as possible without breaking the bank.

Oven Mitt Reviews

In order to pick our favorite oven mitts, we looked at a wide variety of brands and models. After scrutinizing many products, we found our top five choices. We’ve broken down the important features, pros, and cons of each glove.

The Silicone Kitchen Gloves made by Chefaith are an excellent option for anyone seeking a great multitasking option at an affordable price. The bright red gloves are heat resistant up to 480°F. They are great for cooking, baking, grilling, holding pots or hot dishes, and they are FDA compliant. This choice is BPA free and has a unique fabric lined design for comfort and dexterity. They are easy to put on and take off in addition to being nonstick and odor resistant. Two gloves are included for both the right and left hands. This model is also dishwasher safer making clean up a breeze.

PROS

CONS

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    Made of silicone, BPA free 
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    Heat resistant up to 480°F
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    Fabric lined design for comfort and flexibility
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    Great for multitasking
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    Easy to clean, dishwasher safe
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    Affordable
  • Only available in a bright red color
  • Can be difficult for those with very small hands to use

The Oven Mitts by Big Red House is available in a dark red or black, and they are an excellent choice for those wanting a more traditional option. This item features a 12.5-inch length to ensure maximum coverage. They are composed of a combination of cotton and BPA free silicone and are heat resistant up to 480°F. This choice is backed by a full refund guarantee and are ideal for multitasking. This item comes in a set of two mitts.

PROS

CONS

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    Made of cotton and silicone, BPA free, with a soft terry cloth lined interior
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    Heat resistant silicone stripes up to 480°F
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    12.5-inch length to safeguard forearms
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    Great for multitasking
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    Can be worn on the left or right hand, mitt style
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    Affordable and machine washable
  • Only available in dark red or black
  • Partially made of cotton with silicone striping, so they may not be as slip resistant as fully silicone covered options

The Fred Bear Hands Oven Mitts by Fred & Friends are a fun and functional choice for cooks with a sense of humor and a need for safety. They are designed to look like bear paws, being constructed from insulated cotton with heat resistant silicone paw pads. The silicone paws are heat resistant up to 450°F. This item comes with a right and left mitt style bear hand.

PROS

CONS

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    Made of insulated cotton and silicone, BPA free
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    Heat resistant paw pads up to 450°F
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    Fun and functional
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    Great for multitasking
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    Easy to clean
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    Affordable and machine washable 
  • Can be difficult for those with very small hands to use
  • Specific mitt for the right hand and specific mitt for left hand could     be problematic if one is lost

The Professional Silicone Oven Mitt by Homwe is a stylish choice for those wanting more diverse color choices. These gloves feature a 13.7-inch long design with wide openings to ensure safety for larger hands. They are composed of 100 percent FDA approved, BPA free silicone and are heat resistant up to 450°F. Easily cleaned with a damp cloth, these mitt style protectors come in five colors and feature a fabric lining for comfort.

PROS

CONS

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    Made of silicone, BPA free and FDA approved
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    Heat resistant up to 450°F
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    Fabric lined design for comfort and flexibility
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    Great for bigger hands
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    Five different color options
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    Affordable
  • Can be difficult for those with very small hands to use

The Heat Resistant Silicone Oven Mitts by Kedsum is a great choice for cooks wanting a great product at an affordable price. This set also comes with two mini silicone oven mitts that are great for lifting heavy pots with two handles. This choice features an outer silicone layer in a honeycomb design. They are 13 inches long to offer excellent forearm protection. They are easy to clean with a damp cloth and ideal for a wide variety of uses.

PROS

CONS

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    Made of silicone and polyester/cotton blend interior lining
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    Heat resistant up to 450°F
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    Fabric lined design for comfort and flexibility
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    Perfect for multitasking and comes with a set of mini silicone mitts as well
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    Easy to clean since with a damp cloth
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    Affordable
  • Only available in a bright green or red option

Conclusion

In closing, a quality set of oven mitts can make every element of cooking, baking, grilling, and even household chores easier. Our top choice for the best oven mitts is the Chefaith Silicone Kitchen Gloves. This option not only stands up to extreme temperatures of up to 480°F, but they are perfect for multitasking. We love the glove design, and it adds dexterity when handling hot cookware and can even be used to stir hot liquids in a pinch. They are dishwasher safe and odor resistant which makes them a remarkable option. We appreciate the fact that they are easy to manner in, they are durable, and they are affordable as well. Overall, the Chefaith Silicone Kitchen Gloves are our favourite choice for the best oven mitt since they are a safe, reliable, and helpful addition to your kitchen arsenal.

Best Compact Microwaves for 2019

How to know which compact microwave is best for you?

Convenient

Off course the whole purpose of buying a compact microwave oven is to have something convenient. And the first thing before you buy, think about the space and volume. How much space you have where you will keep your microwave and how much volume you need depending on your lifestyle.

Functions

This totally depends on your life style and personality. If you are busy person then you should choose the microwave with most pre-program functions e.g popcorn, pizza. 

Watts

Generally, lower the watts, more the cooking time microwave will take.

Colors

Color doesn’t have anything to do with the performance. We all have our preferences and choices. A nice colored microwaved will look good inside your room. If there is a more color variety it can be appealing to some people. What if your wife loves red.

Want a quick cup of coffee in 2 minutes? Westinghouse WCMB660B can do this like magic. Looking for a gift idea for your mom or your grandmother? Mechanical Dials and low maintenance makes this compact microwave can be an ideal choice for seniors. Or people living in small apartments. Old people having difficulty with the eyesight can operate it easily as it uses knobs instead of digital pads and numbers

Features

  • Weight: 23.1 lbs
  • Power: 600 Watts
  • Colors: White & Black
  • Power levels: 6

PROS

CONS

  • Perfect for seniors.
  • Easy to use, as it has only knobs to operate.
  • Doesn't take much of time.
  • Simple & Safe
  • Durable & Strong
  • Light Weight
  • Has a glass turntable
  • Not for heavy duty
  • Not ideal for heavy duty cooking.
  • No child lock

This 900 watts easy to use compact microwave oven come with many pre-programmed functions. You can make popcorn, pizza, frozen vegetables and bake potatoes. Muted beep a notable feature which makes ideal for the people who are looking for quiet microwave.

Features:

  •        Power: 900 Watts
  •        Colors: Black Stainless & Stainless Steel
  •        Power levels: 10
  •         Weight: 27.3 lbs

PROS

CONS

  •       Digital control panel
  •      Has child safety lock
  •      No noise
  •      Clear Buttons
  •      Warms food very fast
  •      Smaller size
  •       Power saver mode
  •  After using some time, It may start taking long time to cook.
  • Opening and closing of door can be too loud for some people.

As the name says it all. This microwave by Oster can be a great choice for dorm or any other similar small space where size can be an issue. Comes with the 6 cooking functions to make cooking further easier

Features:

  • Power: 700 Watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Weight: 26 lbs

PROS

CONS

  •       UL approved
  •       Ideal for for small area
  • Costumer service may not be the good

Hamilton’s Beach 0.7 was created by keeping busy people in mind. Built-in cooking functions make it easier to cook food. Available in 4 colors and great design. Other features include weight defrost and time defrost.

Features:

  • Power: 700 watts
  • Type: Digital
  • Color: White, Black, Red, Stainless Steel

PROS

CONS

  •       One touch cooking
  •      Built in functions (6)
  •      Contains a turn plate
  •      Easy to use
  •      Attractive design
  •       Removable glass turntable
  • Can be little noisy sometimes

Do you love popcorn? Then you gonna love this microwave as well. You can make popcorn with one touch, without worrying about the power. It automatically adjusts cooking or reheating time. 7 pre-programmed buttons can help you to cook.

  • Meat
  • Frozen Pizza
  • Frozen Vegetables
  • Potato
  • Entrée (Frozen)
  • Casserole

Sensor cook keeps the soups, gravies, sauces and vegetables warm until you serve. Genius sensor cooking automatically adjusts the power level by measuring steam. With the help of steam, it calculates the remaining time and adjusts the power level according to it. It meets 2016 DOE Energy Conservation Standards.

Features:

  •        Power: 1100 Watts
  •        Type: Digital
  •        Touch buttons
  •        Weight: 35.3 lbs
  •        Colors: Black, Stainless, White

PROS

CONS

  •       One touch genius sensor
  •      7 pre-programmed functions
  •      Sensor for cooking and Reheat
  •      Safety lock for control pad
  •      Auto defrost by weight
  •       Includes turntable
  •      Light turns on only, when its running.
  •      Be careful when opening, to avoid steam           burns.
  •      Medium sound/beeps
  •      You have to press start after using Quick 30      buttons.Which can be annoying for some          users.

If you are looking for inexpensive low watts microwave then it can be a good option.

Features:

  • Power: 700 Watts
  • Color: Black & White
  • LED Display
  • Weight: 26.2 lbs

PROS

CONS

  • Light is always on (door open or closed)
  • Buttons are not much sensitive.
  • Bad internal light

Conclusion

So, the Westinghouse WCM660B is clearly the winner as you can see. Overall it’s the best if you don't are not looking for some high voltage small microwave. But If you can afford and want something on higher end then “Panasonic NN-SU696S ” can be the best use of your money.