Legumes are a notable family of plants because they are the only significant vegetative source of protein in the food web. That is because of their ability to host nitrogen-fixing bacteria. Since vegetarianism is so important in Indian cuisine, it is no surprise that legumes play a significant role.
Legumes include all of the world’s beans, peas, lentils and pulses. You can learn all about cooking them from our guide to Indian beans, peas and lentils, or see our many recipes on cooking dal.