I’m always looking for new and innovative ways to use beans and lentils. I love hearty meals especially in Autumn and Winter. In all honesty, I only started using mung beans a couple of months ago. I was at my local bulk buying shop to stock up on beans, lentils, grains and nuts and thought I’d give these guys a try.
I’ve been buying staples in bulk much more these days and avoiding the big supermarkets as much as possible to save the amount of plastic I use. Even our toilet paper is wrapped in plastic – now we’ve switched to Who Gives a Crap! I’ve become so much more conscious of this so I decided to buy things in my own jars directly without having to discard any plastic packaging. Bit by bit, I’d really love to reduce the overall amount of plastic that I bring into the household. Have you got any tips on how to reduce plastics in your house? Would love to hear some more suggestions! I’ll be writing a post on it soon 🙂
This stew is really healthy and has lots of wonderful flavours and textures. I loved adding the kale but you can use spinach instead or leave it out altogether if you don’t have it at home, it’s optional. The fresh tomatoes can also be swapped for half a can of diced tomatoes. I don’t like recipes that restrict you to certain ingredients without alternatives. If there’s something at home that you don’t have from the ingredients list, think about either substituting it or leaving it out altogether. I guess this comes with experience in the kitchen and feeling confident to swap things around and/or leaving it out but still achieve a delicious meal.
Mung beans are quite a pretty bean once soaked for a few hours or overnight. It’s typically what I do with all beans and legumes to speed up the cooking time and to also help them break down when digesting. If I eat beans or anything of that nature that wasn’t soaked first and cooked straight away, I feel really bloated and am in a lot of pain (and I mean A LOT of pain!), and the bonus (just kidding!) is that I also look like I’m six months pregnant!
I hope you learn from my mistakes and make sure you always soak them before cooking. Even if it’s for a few hours, trust me, you will not regret that extra time. I have this stew with some beautiful fresh wholemeal bread and it’s simply to die for. I’m really happy with this recipe and hope you enjoy it just as much 🙂
- 2 cups mung beans (soaked for at least 3 hrs, drained and rinsed)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 brown or red onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp ginger, finely grated
- 2 potatoes - feel free to leave the skin on just make sure you wash them well first, chopped into small cubes (this is to help them cook faster)
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- Cayenne pepper to desired heat
- 2 tomatoes, diced or half a can of diced tomatoes
- 1 heaped tbsp tomato paste (optional)
- 3-3.5 cups water (boiled)
- 1 bunch kale, roughly chopped
- Salt to taste
- Handful coriander, chopped (optional)
- Put the beans in a medium saucepan and add water just enough to cover the beans. Place on stove on medium heat and bring to boil. You will probably get some white foam on the top. I normally just scoop that off. Once boiling, let it simmer on low-medium heat for around 15 minutes until all the water has pretty much evaporated and the beans have become soft.
- While the beans are cooking, in a large saucepan on low heat, add the oil, onion, garlic and ginger cooking until the onion is translucent.
- Add in the potatoes, turmeric powder, cayenne pepper, tomatoes and tomato paste and cook for around 5 minutes, occasionally stirring.
- Add the mung beans and cook for a further 5 minutes to incorporate everything.
- Pour in the boiling water and add the kale, stirring for a minute or two. Salt to taste and half cover to simmer for about 10-15 minutes. Stir occasionally. The best way to check if it's cooked is to try a piece of the potato.
- Sprinkle the coriander on top and serve on its own or with a nice thick piece of handmade bread.