I’ve had a bit of a mung bean fetish lately thanks to my husband cooking up big batches the past few weeks. I must confess this dish is largely his recipe with some slight modifications.
If mung beans are new to you, they are quite the treat! Not only are they delicious, but they are loaded with protein, fiber, magnesium and folate. Many recipes do not suggest soaking, but I find they cook faster and are more tender when soaked overnight. And they more than double in size for a nice big batch!
I used my own spice combo to create a unique flavor, but if you don’t have the time or inclination to do so, just use your favorite curry powder. And if you don’t feel like chopping tomatoes, you can substitute a can of crushed or diced tomatoes.
Ingredients (makes about 8 servings)
1 cup mung beans (soaked overnight, if desired)
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes (cut in half or quarters, or a 14-ounce can of low-salt diced or crushed tomatoes)
1 small sweet onion (small dice – about 1 heaping cup)
1 14-ounce can coconut milk
2 cups baby spinach (well packed)
3 cups water
2 -3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons coconut oil (or cooking oil of choice)
chopped cilantro for garnish (about 1 tablespoon per serving)
Spices (or substitute 2 – 3 tablespoons curry powder of choice)
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground coridander
1 – 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- In a large soup pot, saute the diced onions in oil for about 5 minutes over medium-high heat.
- Stir in the spices. Add the mung beans, water and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 – 40 minutes until beans are fully cooked. If mung beans are not soaked, add an addition 15 – 30 minutes of cooking time to achieve desired tenderness.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the coconut milk and lime juice.
- Stir in the spinach and make sure it is completely submerged. Cover with the lid and let sit for about 3 minutes until spinach is wilted.
- Serve hot or chilled with cilantro garnish. May be served over rice or grain pilaf of choice.