Friday, 18 February 2005

Ginisang Munggo (Sauteed Mung Beans)

My father-in-law is in love with anything cooked with mung beans (munggo). Whether it's sauteed, ginataan (with coconut), in pastries, etc. He will have it anytime. Some of this bias was passed on to my husband. That's why this Pinoy standard is a regular in our dining table.

One thing about the cooking of mung beans, other people strain the mush after softening (by boiling it) mainly to separate the skin from the 'meat'. My FIL and husband couldn't care less. They eat it skin and all. But me I'd like to get as much skin out as possible but do not like the tediousness of straining it. Besides you get less of the 'meat' (will somebody please tell me what do you call the inside of a bean?) when doing the latter. As for the meat that goes with this, we usually have the pork and the tinapa (smoked fish) flakes when we were in the Philippines. Here it's harder to source the tinapa so we just make do with shrimps. You can have all 3 meats (pork, shrimp, tinapa) in there it's all up to you. Or you can just have a combination of 2, 1 or even none. Nowadays, we skip the fatty pork for health reasons. :-p

Ginisang Munggo
(Sauteed Mung Beans)

1/2 cup sliced fatty pork meat [optional]
1 Tbsp cooking oil
1/2 Tbsp minced garlic
2-3 medium tomatoes - sliced
1 medium onion - sliced
3-4 Tbsp bagoong (sauteed salted tiny shrimps)
1 cup mung beans
1 cup shelled shrimps or prawns
1/3 cup flaked tinapa (smoked fish) [optional]
2 cups spinach - washed
1 tsp sea salt or 1 Tbsp patis (fish sauce)
  1. [Optional] Put the mung beans in a container and add enough water to cover it. Discard all ones that float. Soak for several hours.
  2. Drain mung beans and put in a saucepan. Add about 4 cups water and bring to boil. Bring down heat to low and simmer until mung beans are soft and separating from its skin.
  3. To remove as much skin as possible without straining, make sure the boiling water level is at least 1/2 inch above the mung beans level. Bring up the heat to medium, cover and bring it up to boil. Remove cover and you can see that the skins congregate at the centre and around the sides of the pan. Once you remove the cover you have to immediately scoop out the skins. You have to catch them while they're still floating on top because upon lifting the cover the cold incoming air (or the loss of heat) makes them sink that's why you have to be quick. Cover and wait for it to boil again and repeat the exercise until you've given up removed as much skin as you can. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. [Optional] Put pork meat in a separate saucepan and add just enough water to cover it. Bring to boil and let it simmer at medium heat until water dries out. Just before it does, add the oil to make the meat render more oil and let it fry in its own fat. Do this until pork is lightly brown. Push to one side in the pan.
  5. Saute garlic in low heat until light brown. Then add onion, bring heat to medium and cook for about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook until soft.
  6. Add bagoong, stir fry for about 1 minute. Add the shrimps and stir fry until pink.
  7. Tip in the cooked mung beans including its sauce. If it's too thick add a little hot water. Bring to boil and then lower heat to simmer for about 5-10 minutes while stirring from time to time. Taste and if need be add some sea salt or patis.
  8. Stir in the flaked tinapa (if using) and spinach. Simmer again briefly for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and serve.

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