Immature soy bean, usually still in the pod but can also be found hulled. They are actually quite soft to eat and easy to chew, unlike the mature soybeans that are hard. Mature soybeans are used to make tofu and soy milk.
Like these ones, you can find them already hulled and frozen in most grocery freezer sections. These are great for a quick protein and fibre source. You can add them to salads, soups, rice/quinoa dishes, as a snack by themselves!
But is there anything good in there? Yes! In ½ cup of hulled edamame you can find: 120 calories, 9 g fibre, 2.5 g fat, 11 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates and 10% of your daily value of iron. That’s quite high in fibre and iron!
But is soy good for me? There has been a lot of research on soy and here are some of the possible health benefits. Soy protein may help reduce insulin resistance, kidney damage and fatty liver in people with diabetes. Soy proteins contain isoflavones (phytoestrogens) that have been shown to help reduce overall and LD (“bad”) cholesterol and increase the HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
But is it safe? There are a few different guidelines for the upper range of intake for adults. There still needs to be long term studies in order to really know actual safety. However, short term studies show that about 25 g of soy protein per day or 100 mg of isoflavones/day. Which is quite a large amount of soy. You must however take caution if you have a history of hormonal or gynecological disease, if you have liver disorder or if you are taking hormone replacement therapy or blood thinners.
Into hummus? Here’s a tasty recipe on edamame hummus you should definitely try from @ohsheglows
Makes 2 heaping cups
· 1 (500g) bag frozen organic shelled edamame (equal to 3 cups thawed/drained)
· 2 garlic cloves, peeled
· 3-4 tbsp fresh lemon juice (I used 4T)
· 1/4 cup tahini (stir well before measuring)
· 2-4 tbsp water, to thin as needed (I used 3T)
· 1/2-1 tsp fine grain sea salt, or to taste (I used 3/4 tsp)
· 1/4 tsp ground coriander seeds, optional
· 1/8th tsp cayenne pepper, optional
· To garnish: smoked paprika, freshly ground black pepper, extra virgin olive oil, edamame
1. If starting with thawed edamame, rinse and drain before using. If starting with frozen edamame, simmer in a pot of water until edamame is heated through. Rinse and drain before using. You can also remove the skins of the edamame for a slightly smoother spread, but I didn’t bother. Set aside a handful of edamame beans for garnish just before serving.
2. With motor running on food processor, drop in 2 garlic cloves to mince.
3. Next, add edamame to processor and process until somewhat smooth, stopping to scrape down the side of the bowl as necessary.
4. Add in the lemon juice, tahini, and water and process again until smooth. Don’t be afraid to let the processor run for a few minutes and get it really smooth!
5. Add salt to taste along with optional cayenne pepper and ground coriander. Process again until combined.
6. Scoop into a serving bowl. Garnish with smoked paprika, freshly ground black pepper, a generous drizzle of olive oil, and reserved edamame. Serve with crostini, toasted pita chips, crudités, and/or crackers.
* to make a lower FODMAP version, omit the garlic cloves
How do you like to use edamame?
I work as a Dietitian and definitely walk the talk. I love to cook and help people get back to being healthy again.