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What types of pulses are there and where can I find them?

Pulses come in both dry and canned forms. Canned beans such as black, kidney (white and red), navy and pinto, as well as canned chickpeas and lentils can be found in your grocer’s canned vegetable aisle or in the ethnic foods aisle.

In dry form, both whole and split yellow and green peas are available as well as red and green lentils and many types of beans and chickpeas. Dry pulses can also be found in the ethnic foods aisle, or alongside other dry goods such as rice and pasta.

Pulse flours are increasingly available in grocery stores, health and bulk food stores. Commonly found pulse flours include black or whole bean and chickpea. Pulse flours can be used in baking and are especially convenient for those who are celiac or gluten-intolerant. Pulse flours can be used to boost the nutritional profile of baked goods as they have a higher protein, fibre and folate content than wheat flour.

My kids won't eat pulses, any suggestions?

An easy way to get your kids eating pulses is by puréeing them. Once puréed, pulses can go into almost anything! Try adding to spaghetti sauce, soups, stews, macaroni and cheese and even in baked goods like biscuits and cookies. See the Buscuit recipe below for purée instructions and a delicious way to help you get started!

Why do some recipes call for baking soda to be added to the pulse cooking water?

Baking soda shortens the cooking process by helping the dry seeds absorb water, especially if you are using hard water. However, baking soda destroys thiamin, an important B vitamin found in pulses, and can also render the pulses too soft and mushy. Adding baking soda to pulse cooking water is not recommended, but if hard water is your only choice, limit the amount of baking soda to 1/8 tsp per 2 cups of water.