Lentil and Mung Bean Curry

By Esther Boateng

Out with the old and in with the new
 sums up my start to the new year. As I clear out my pantry, I find half-used packets of beans and legumes I want to use before they expire, and this is the perfect recipe to use these items: lentil and mung bean curry. Feel free to use any legume, whatever you’ve got, chuck it into the pot, and create a healthy heartwarming curry seasoned with turmeric, burdock root, and a dollop of cream or mustard.

There’s no right or wrong way to make this curry; make it as mild or as spicy as you like, and the same goes for the consistency. If the seasoning is too mild, add a little more until it tastes the way you like it. If the curry has a thick consistency, go easy on the stock or broth, adding only enough liquid for the legumes to cook throughout and prevent your curry from sticking to the pot. If you have too much liquid, add some arrowroot powder to thicken it, or leave it to cook a bit longer so the liquid reduces. I often leave the curry to simmer on the lowest heat until I’ve finished cooking my rice. 

Another handy tip is to soak a handful of raw legumes, such as chickpeas, overnight (aka sprouting) and cook them the next day; it’s a healthier way to enjoy legumes and reduces the cooking time considerably. If you have access to a pressure cooker, rinse the soaked legumes, put them in a pressure cooker with enough water to cover them, apply the ‘legume/bean setting’, and pressure cook them for approximately 16 minutes. After that, they’re good to use however you like. If you have a dehydrator, you can easily dehydrate your soaked legumes; keep them in an airtight container until you’re ready to use them. If you don’t have the time or inclination to sprout your own legumes, the store-bought version is also a great option.

This curry can be eaten either on its own or with brown or white rice, a sweet potato, or perhaps just half an avocado and steamed broccoli.


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