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Mung Bean Curry

The mung bean is a versatile source of protein that is used across the Asian cooking spectrum in a plethora of ways. The beans are small, globular in shape and green in colour. They're a highly versatile legume that can  be used in soups/stews/curries, or if sprouted they make a great salad accompaniment.

This mung bean curry makes for a hearty meal served either with rice or naan bread and can be found in most South African Indian homes as a Monday night meal!


1½ cups of mung beans
3 tomatoes-blended
1 finely sliced onion
4-5 curry leaves
1 tsp cumin seeds & mustard seeds
½ tsp turmeric
1-2 tsp red chilli powder
1½ tsp cumin
1½ tsp coriander
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp crushed garlic
½ cup of fresh coriander
2 Tbsp oil
Salt to taste

Cooking Instructions

  • In a fairly large pot, add the mung beans to boiling water and let them cook until the beans are soft - not mushy, just firm.
  • Ensure that the mung beans retain a bit of water that will act as a gravy.
  • In a separate pot, add a tablespoon of olive oil followed by the cumin and mustard seeds.
  • Once the seeds have popped and released their fragrance, add the curry leaves, onions and green chili. Sauté until translucent.
  • Add the pureed tomatoes, followed by all the dry spices as well as the ginger and garlic.
  • Let this simmer on a low heat until the mixture resembles a tomato chutney and all the flavours have been absorbed.
  • Add this mixture to the cooked mung beans, together with the tablespoon of lemon juice and chopped coriander.
  • Let simmer on a low heat so that the mung beans absorb all the spices from the tomato chutney.
  • Once cooked, serve hot with rice or naan bread.
Serves 6 people

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