Creamy Mung Bean Curry
I loved your feedback to my mung bean stew last week, especially Hanna’s rendition of the dish. If your comments are any indication, you may have bought mung beans a while ago but not sure what to make with them. I was like that, too. Last year, I couldn’t get enough of simple spiced mung beans. Despite having the mung beans in my cupboard for 2 years or so, I discovered their awesomeness as I (attempted) to eat through my pantry. I became so enamored with them that I bought another 4 lbs when I moved to Houston. With a focus on eating through my pantry yet again, I have been experimenting with mung beans. Bring on more beans, right?
While this creamy mung bean curry hails from the ever fabulous Lisa, ever an Indian bean whiz should I meet one, I knew it was a winner before I even made it. Like my recent Kabocha Squash, Coconut & Lentil Soup, it includes all my favourite things: tamarind, cumin, Aleppo chili flakes, and a bit of coconut milk for a touch of creaminess for the sauce. A simple twist of adding curry leaves makes this a different dish altogether. Southern Indian-style.
Have you tried mung beans yet? How do you like to prepare them?
This is my submission to this month’s Bookmarked Recipes.
Creamy Mung Bean Curry
Adapted from Lisa’s Kitchen
1 cup dried mung beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp tamarind concentrate
3-4 cups water
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp Aleppo chili flakes
3/4 cup lite coconut milk (half a can)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (I used cherry tomatoes)
1/2 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste
10-12 fresh curry leaves
1. In a medium pot, add mung beans, turmeric, tamarind paste and water (start with 3 cups and add more if they become dry). Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes, until the beans become soft and tender.
2. After around 30 minutes, in a small frypan, heat coconut oil over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and heat until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Add chili flakes (to taste) and stir for a few seconds. Deglaze with the coconut milk, and add the garlic, tomatoes, asafoetida, salt and curry leaves. Allow mixture to simmer, until slightly thickened, around 5-10 minutes.
3. When the mung beans are finished, stir in the coconut milk mixture. Simmer, uncovered, over medium heat, to allow the flavours to meld and the sauce to be absorbed, around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with brown rice or your choice of side.