Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Moong Bean-Plantain Curry

Did you see Stephen Colbert on C-span’s televised Correspondents’ Dinner, last Sunday night? His comedy skit was breathtaking in its boldness. Charming, clear and ironically straightforward – his comic delivery was a sight to behold. Finally it took a pretend journalist to state the obvious – the little emperor has no clothes and of course that made the ‘real’ journalists and the guest of honor spitting mad. If you enjoy political satire or like Colbert style, don’t miss out his stellar performance and checkout this site for transcript and video link. One has to admire his chutzpah.

Coming back to cooking, here is a traditional recipe where plantain and moong beans are cooked together in water and seasoned with green chilli-coconut paste. Rural in origin and often served with sorghum roti, this favorite curry of mine is a hearty, flavorful and filling meal, also one of the ways that I cook plantains aka green bananas.

Plantain cut into cubes, Moong beans soaked, green chilli-coconut paste
Presoaked Whole Moong Beans, Green Chilli-Coconut Paste and Plantain cubes


1 plantain (green banana), peeled and cubed
2 cups of presoaked whole moong beans (soaked in water overnight)
6-8 green chillies
1 tablespoon of finely sliced fresh coconut
¼ teaspoon of turmeric
½ to 1 teaspoon of salt
For popu
1 tsp of mustard seeds, cumin, few pieces of dried red chilli and curry leaves

Take the presoaked whole moong beans, about 2 cups in a big vessel. Add 4 cups of water, quarter teaspoon of salt and cook them covered on medium-high heat for about 15 minutes undisturbed. Presoaked moong beans cook easily and can be done without using the pressure-cooker. It tastes somuch better cooked in this old style. Meanwhile do the prep work. Peel and cut plantain and make a smooth paste of green chillies-coconut.

After 15 minutes of cooking, check the moong beans. They must be tender by now. Add plantain cubes, turmeric and also water if needed. Cover and cook them on medium heat again for another 10 minutes. Plantains cook fast unlike potatoes and by the end 10 to 15 minutes of cooking, plantain cubes will be tender and the moong beans will be falling apart. That’s what we want. At this stage, stir in green chilli-coconut paste and cook for another 5 minutes.

Just before turning off the heat, heat a teaspoon of peanut oil in small vessel, add and toast the popu or tadka ingredients. Add this to the curry and stir. Turn off the heat. Serve and enjoy the best tasting curry, the kind you’d find in a humble Indian home (never in a restaurant). Usually served with chapati, sorghum roti or with rice.

Moong Bean-Plantain Curry with Chapatis
Moong Bean-Plantain Curry with Chapatis ~ Our Simple Lunch

Kitchen Notes:
Prepare the curry little bit on the watery side.
The gravy of this curry comes from watery, overcooked moong beans and the greenchilli-coconut paste.
I’ve also added one banana pepper to this curry.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Arati Kaaya (Plantain),Moong Dal (whole) (Friday May 5, 2006 at 1:48 pm- permalink)
Comments (29)

The New Home of Mahanandi: