Monday, December 5, 2011

Monday’s Bread Bowl: Red Mung Bean Stew

Lessen a bitter bite with annatto

The Mixed Stew crew prepared this mung bean stew in the chilly days leading toward Thanksgiving. Mung beans, ham hocks, and annatto make for a warm bowl of comfort. Serve this rich stew with steamed rice. Here’s the recipe:

What you will need:

1 large wooden spoon
1 large stock pot with lid
1 large bunch tatsoi, chopped small
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, diced
5 cups water
3 to 4 ham hocks, soaked overnight in 3 cups water
1 tablespoon annatto powder diluted in ½ cup water
1 lb mung beans, soaked for about an hour
1 large bowl
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 colander
Pinch of salt and pepper

Cooking and Preparation:

Remove ham hocks from soaking water and debone hock meat into bite-sized pieces. Set aside ham hock liquid. Heat stock pot on medium-high heat and toss in cooking oil, salt, pepper, onion, and garlic. Add ham hock meat and let ingredients sweat until onions turn translucent. Stir occasionally. Drain soaking mung beans into a colander. Into pot, pour in ham hock liquid and mungo beans. Let pot come to a boil and then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover pot and let ingredients slowly simmer for 30 minutes then add annatto liquid. Mix well, cover, and let stew simmer for another 45 minutes. Finally, stir in Japanese spinach. Mung beans and ham hocks should be cooked until tender -- at least another 30 minutes or so.

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