Starting April 2014, Chef Brad Gray undertook research on a Manitoba Pulse and Soy Growers funded research project as part of Red River College’s newly developing Culinary Research program.
Using different edible bean products, including locally grown and processed flours, purees and ready-to-eat beans, Chef Gray developed 10 new unconventional uses for bean products to enable people to enjoy beans in a variety of easy to consume forms. The resulting recipes included gluten free crackers and cookies, perogies, flatbreads and crème brûlée.
The primary objective was to maximize the amount of beans per serving with a goal to maximize the quantity of beans without affecting the taste or texture of the food. The goal is to help people obtain 1/2 a cup of beans in one day through one or two products.
In January 2016, Alyssa Houston, the Culinary Research program’s first co-op student, prepared a selection of products from the initial project to be consumer tested in the Culinary Exchange annex at Paterson GlobalFoods Institute.
Over the 3 days of testing, 300 participants sampled and commented on navy bean perogies, black bean chocolate cupcakes, and Pinto Powerballs.
Although results from the surveys have not been released, the response was positive with a number of people asking if they could take another sample.
Results from the survey and the recipes will soon be available at www.manitobapulse.ca – all in time to celebrate International Year of Pulses with a new favourite bean recipe.