Although entitled The Benevolent Bean, this small volume recognizes all of the common members of the family Leguminosae. Those branches of the family included in the recipe section are the varieties of beans, lentils, peanuts, soy beans, and chick peas available in American markets. The history of the legumes and the delightful comments in the recipe section range from the early recorded history of legumes to the present and include feed and ornamental members of the family as well as those used as human food.
The somewhat lyrical introductory chapters present the legumes in terms of distribution and use throughout the world and their nutritive contribution to the diet of man, with particular emphasis on cholesterol lowering qualities. The chapters on history and bean lore and the 200 or more recipes for both green and dried legumes, gathered from many countries, indicate the breadth and depth of the author's knowledge