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Fair bean

Easy Bean, the premium prepared meals company which uniquely features beans in each of its recipes, has launched its first ready prepared meals to carry the Fairtrade Mark.

Easy Bean was established in 2007 by the ‘Queen of Beans’ Christina Baskerville. For many in the UK baked beans are the only bean consumed regularly but Christina wants to teach us to love the full range of beans, peas and lentils which are central and essential to the cuisines of many countries across the world. They are high in fibre, low in fat and salt and also have the benefit of being gluten and dairy free; and provide two to three of your 5-a-day. She says, “Beans have more fibre than many wholegrains, are virtually fat free and are high in protein. In the UK the broad bean was the most important staple in our diets until Sir Walter Raleigh brought Queen Elizabeth 1st the now ubiquitous potato.”

The Easy Bean range of dishes includes New Mexican Chilli, Moroccan Tagine, Indian Sambar, French Cuisinées, Spanish Puchero and African Palava are the original one-pot hot meals (and have been described by Food Magazine as ‘As close to home-cooked as you’ll get in a tub’). Vegetarian one-pot meals retail from £2.95 and those with meat from £3.35 from most supermarkets.

Now two of the range have been granted Fairtrade status — the African Palava is a West African hotpot and a colourful profusion of Fairtrade brown beans, free range chicken, peanuts, sweet potatoes and spinach (‘palava’ means talking profusely or a business meeting and derives from Portuguese, introduced by the slave traders in West Africa). The New Mexican Chilli includes Fairtrade red beans with sweet peppers, tomatoes, spiked with the jalapeño chilli.

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