It’s Tuesday morning. You have a number pulse-industry experts arriving for lunch, ready to launch the International Year of Pulses. How would you prepare the ultimate pulse feast?

Chefs in Rome had just that very challenge. Tasked with preparing a five course celebratory lunch to mark the launch of the International Year of the Pulses, they cooked up the most appropriate of spreads for their guests at the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, combining some of the best bean, lentil, pea and chickpea dishes that Italy has to offer.

Guests were treated to Panelle Fritte, chickpea flour pancakes which originate from the city of Palermo in Sicily. Lentil and barley soup was next on the menu, followed by a traditional serving of pasta and beans. This historic, meatless dish started life as an Italian peasant’s delicacy, suitably gives guests a flavour of the dependence many of the world’s populations have placed on such dishes for thousands of years.

“Lamb and beans al’Uccelletto”, a more elegant-sounding Tuscan classic, followed for the main course. The original name for this is “Fagioli a guise d’uccelletto”, which literally translates to “beans in the manner of birds”.

You may be surprised to hear that cooking with pulses, a healthy source of minerals and vitamins, is not limited to savoury dishes. Fear not, you can still cater for those guests with a sweet tooth. Fondant chocolate and beans cake, topped-off with vanilla ice cream and orange sauce is the perfect way to cater for their needs.

This bean banquet has set the benchmark for the International Year of Pulses. If any of these ideas have given you inspiration to prepare your own feast, share your creations and favourite recipes using the hashtag #LovePulses to share your ideas to mark the International Year of Pulses.

Fancy having a go at cooking up your own Pasta e Fagioli in preparation for your feast? Find the recipe here:,recipe/22/pasta-e-fagioli

You can follow @LovePulses on Twitter and Instagram or search Love Pulses on Facebook and Pinterest for more delicious bean, pea, lentil and chickpea dishes or visit the ‘Pulse Pantry’ on for more culinary inspirations.