WARNING: the foods we cook for Abby are safe for her, but not necessarily for everyone. Please confirm any ingredients are safe for you before using in your diet. Food Allergies can kill and the best policy is complete avoidance. Read this post for more info.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Mung Bean Dal ( Soy free, dairy free, gluten free, corn-free, nut and seed free.)

Hands down we consume large quantities of Mung Bean Sprouts, but I haven't done much with the mung beans themselves.

On one of my trips to the various Asian Markets in Houston I brought home a few bags of organic Mung Beans. I have been pleased to see an increase in available organic products being offered at the Asian Markets, and the best way to support a continued increase of organic products is to make sure to buy what they have on on the shelf.

Mung Beans are legumes. They are LOADED with great nutrition.

Protein-14 grams per cup

Potassium- 537 mg per cup

Also, calcium,B6, magnesium(24 percent of daily), vitamin C, iron.

Mung beans are popular and a staple in many Countries, sadly not a popular food here in the US, they should be though!

Abby does pretty well with the legumes with the exception of soy, and dark beans(dark red,black) . She does best when they have been soaked, rinsed and cooked until very soft.

You can find mung beans that have been hulled and split. Unfortunately when I went to buy some I kept finding that they had added yellow dye- we don't do chemical food dye's around here, they are just bad bad for us in general, and when you have sick Mitochondria? It adds insult to injury to use tainted fuels.

So, we could soak and rub these to remove the hulls, but instead we save these for the days when her GI system is in top working condition. I feel strongly that the advice, "Use it or lose it" applies to all our body systems. We encourage Abby's gut to digest as much as possible when not in a flare. Mung beans seem to provide just the right amount of "work out" for her gut.

The recipe below is a new favorite, partially because if we find a recipe to use Tamarind in we always love it, and partially for the heat. We do enjoy a spicy, and full of nutrition meal and this one will be a favorite this winter. These flavors blended so well you will have a hard time tasting the tamarind at all, it just heightens the flavors beautifully.

Mung Bean and Tamarind Dal

1 cup of whole mung beans
2 cups of water(we use cyrstal geyser for all Abby's cooking)
1 cup coconut milk(if you use canned arroy D seems to be safe for corn allergies)
a orange-sized piece of tamarind pulp(will make about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of smooth tamarind paste)
1 cup of hot water(for the tamarind)
green and red pepper( I used 1 of each diced you could use any pepper or mild chili)
1 finely diced or grated yellow onion(grating is a new favorite way of ours. Sometimes the picky ones in our family are fine with the flavor but not the texture, and I admit I am not the best at mincing finely.)
2 teaspoons of turmeric(or fresh root if you have access)
1 teaspoon of pink himalayan salt
fresh parsley(if you have access to fresh curry leaves or you can have cilantro both great options)

Toast the following in fry pan:

2 teaspoons of coconut oil(or other fat of choice) (Tropical Traditions)
1 teaspoon of brown or black mustard seeds
7-10 dried red chili's, broken into bits or left whole(I got a great deal on the whole dried chili's at the Indie/Paki store, 2-3 dollars for a bag that will last a year! )
1/2 teaspoon black cumin seed

Rinse the mung beans. Cover with water and soak overnight. Drain, transfer to a large pot and cover with coconut milk and the 2 cups of fresh water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer, stirring now and then until the beans are soft - About an hour. Set aside and do not drain.

Soak the tamarind in 1 cup of hot water for 20 minutes I stir it a bit and try to break it up well in the water. Strain in a fine metal strainer over another bowl. I use a spoon and stir vigorously, it helps the tamarind pulp separate into the catch bowl below it. throw away the pulp that is left in the strainer(usually bits of seed,pod and roughage that is not wanted)and put the strained tamarind paste aside to add later.

Heat 2 teaspoons of coconut oil in a heavy pan. When hot, add the mustard seeds, red chili and cumin seeds. When the mustard seeds turn grey and begin to pop, add the green and red peppers or chili peppers, the onion, tamarind paste, ground turmeric and salt. Simmer for 5 minutes or so. Add this mixture to the cooked mung beans, return the pot to the stove overlow heat and simmer for another 10-20 minutes to blend the flavors and if you want it thicker. If it is too thick, just add 1/4 cup water at a time to get to a thick gravy consistency.

Serve with or over some basmati rice(I used chicken bone broth instead of water to cook the rice). We like to add a bit of saffron to the rice while it cooks. We also opted to throw a few green cardamon pods into the rice as it cooked(remove before serving) the green cardamon adds a delicate flavor and fragrance to what is a rather heavy and rich dish.

The Mung Bean and Tamarind Dal freezes very well. It makes a great side for other Indian influenced dishes.

Picture below is a pic of the tamarind paste once it has been strained. Thick or thin but I find if you can get about this consistency it adds the right amount of flavor.


Anonymous said...


Found this and thought you might have fun tweaking!!! I am gonna try this one and she has some other goodies on the bottom!!!

Diane said...

Ah ha!!! That is terrific!! Thank you so much!!! :-) That is the perfect link for me!

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