I am currently on a mung bean kick.
Lets just say they’ve been in my pantry for awhile. Two years, perhaps more. I made one meal with them initially that was a bit lackluster, so it has been difficult to give them another try. But, in my pantry clearing gusto, I tried them again. And again. And again. Yes, I have made them 3 times in the past 2 weeks. Now, I’m hooked. You see, I just needed the right recipe.
Mung beans should be on your hitlist because they don’t need any soaking and cook up quickly, around 30-45 minutes. Even beans that are two years old. :) My trick is to slightly overcook them. Here, I cooked them until they were creamy-soft, nearly exploding. Some of my earlier tries were more intact than this batch, but still cooked beyond a firm bean. If you keep it more firm, it has a very pronounced “bean” flavour. It mellows as it cooks further, which I prefer.
So where did I get my mung bean recipe success? From Tess, of course. I made the Easy Indian Mung Beans from Radiant Health, Inner Wealth. Then I made her Mung Beans with a fabulous cilantro chutney from Get Waisted (more to share about that, in due time).
For my third time, I put my own spin on it: I decided to use her base recipe for the mung beans and add a simple fresh mango chutney. The mung beans were simmered with cumin and coriander until all the water is absorbed, then doused in fresh lemon juice. Mung beans are ok with just the spices, but much better with fresh citrus juice. Instead of a tarka, I wanted to highlight the mango chutney so I kept the beans simple. The chutney was simply a mix of mango, ginger, cumin and apple cider vinegar, but next to the mung beans, they were great.
Have you tried mung beans? Any favourite recipes?
This is my submission to Healthy Vegan Fridays.
Indian Mung Beans with Fresh Mango Chutney
Adapted from Tess Challis
1 cup dry mung beans, rinsed
scant 3 cups water
1.5 tsp cumin seeds
1.5 tsp ground coriander
juice from 1 lemon (1/4 cup)
fresh mango chutney (see below)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1. Place mung beans, water, cumin seeds and coriander in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes, until the beans are soft and very tender. Mine always look like they are falling apart and sometimes the water doesn’t all get absorbed. Drain them if you want, but I don’t.
2. Stir in lemon juice and add salt to taste.
3. While the beans are cooking, make your chutney (see below). Once the beans are ready, add a dollop of the chutney on top of the beans and garnish with the cilantro.
A bit of a warning: Because the flavour of the beans is from the lemon juice, and not a tarka, these beans taste best fresh. Usually curries improve with time, but these needed additional lemon juice as leftovers.
Fresh Mango Chutney
Adapted from The Raw Chef
1 mango, chopped (~1/2 cup)
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp grated ginger
1/2 tsp ground cumin
pinch salt, to taste
1. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mash to combine.
Makes 1/2 cup.