Lentils Prove Appealing, Healthier Snack Choice — Health problems associated with poor diet have been of increasing concern recently, with even McDonald’s deciding to downsize its Supersizing. At the same time, Americans have often, unfortunately, turned up their noses at some of those high-fiber foods that make for a healthier diet — like lentils. Researchers at Washington State University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service Western Regional Research Center have developed processes based on high-temperature and high-pressure extrusion to produce a lentil snack food. The snack appeals to consumers and yet contains high amounts of dietary fiber from apple and wheat bran. With a similar consistency to puffed-rice cereal, the snack received an 80 percent approval rating at a taste test during last year’s Pullman Lentil Festival. This year, researchers will be testing flavored versions of high-protein and high dietary-fiber snacks made from dry pea and lentils. The researchers are working to develop a way to scale-up the process for mass production. For more information, contact Juming Tang, biological systems engineering faculty member, at 509.335.2140 or jtang@wsu.edu.