Mung bean soupe! (Ashe Mash)

Excellent vegetarian/vegan soup.

Mung beans are not used so often in Sweden, but in Iran, we make soup, vegetarian steaks, and even risotto with mung beans. Be adventurous and try it! 😊

Today it had to be soup because my brother-in-law whom I visit every Wednesday had a craving for it.

I specify the exact dimensions of the ingredients but please feel free to experiment. Here I use 90 grams of chopped spring onions, instead, you can use other things such as chives or leek, or if you have 50 grams of spring onions, you can supplement with dried chives, Nowadays there are chopped parsley, dill, and other vegetables in the freezer compartment at most well-stocked grocery stores, It is really convenient to buy these and have it in the freezer.

The dish is completely vegetarian (vegan). But you can make it, even more, comforting with meat garnish that we call for Gheimeh in Iran! If you like a garnish but want to make it completely vegetarian, you can use diced celery stalks or celeriac or other vegetables of your choice instead, the principle is the same. It is really worth making this soup, it is both delicious and comforting, not to mention how healthy the soup is! Freezes very well.

The garnish should be fairly “dry”, the important thing is that the meat becomes tender. If you are using vegetables instead, make sure that the vegetables are just about done, it should still have some crunchiness (chewing resistance).

As usual, it is mise en place which means that you wash and chop all vegetables, measure up and have it ready before you start cooking.

Needless to say, taste as you go, and correct seasoning.

Ingredients:
1.5 dl of mung beans
3/4 dl pudding rice
1 large yellow onion
200 grams of chopped celery stalks
180 grams of chopped spinach
90 grams of chopped spring onions or leeks
150 grams of chopped parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon turmeric
1, 5 liters of broth of your choice
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 – 4 tbsp lemon juice
40 grams of chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon of dried dill
1,5 liter of broth of your choice

 Garnish:
1 small yellow onion
120 grams of diced meat (or a vegetable of your choice if you like to keep it completely vegetarian/vegan)
2 tablespoons precooked split peas
0.5 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 tsp saffron dissolved in 1 teaspoon hot water (optional, can be excluded)
0,5 dl of water

Method: 

  1. Wash the pudding rice seven times and soak it in water for 30 minutes at least.
  2. Wash and chop celery in small dices.
  3. Peel and cut the onions into small dices.
  4. If you use fresh spinach, you can wash and chop it, if you use frozen chopped spinach, just measure it and set aside.
  5. Wash, clean, and chop the parsley.
  6. Wash and clean the spring onions, chop it nicely, set aside.
  7. Measure the rest of the ingredients and have them ready on a tray before you start cooking.
  8. Wash the mung beans and remove the shells that float to the surface. Then pour it into a saucepan with some water and salt, bring it to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer 10 – 15 minutes, skim off the skins as they rise to the surface. Add more cold water if necessary. Set aside, do not pour out the water!
  9. Melt a little butter in a pan and fry the celery for 2 – 3 minutes, set aside.
  10. Melt some more butter and oil in the pan and fry the onion for 5 – 7 minutes or until the onion has a golden color. Pour the onion into a spacious saucepan.
  11. Add the seasoning and mix well.
  12. Add the strained rice, the mung beans with its cooking liquid, and lemon juice.
  13. Pour over 1.5 liters of broth (either vegetarian or the broth of your choice), bring to a boil, put on the lid, lower the heat and allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
  14. After 30 minutes you add all vegetables; spinach, parsley, spring onions, and stalk celery.
  15. Bring it to a boil again, put the lid on, lower the heat, and let it simmer for an additional 30 minutes.
  16. In the meantime, you can prepare the garnish, start by frying the onion for 5 – 7 minutes.
  17. Add the finely diced meat or vegetables of your choice, fry until the meat changes color, salt, and pepper, and mix well.
  18. Add the rest of the ingredients: pre-cooked split peas, tomato purée, saffron water, and plain water, allow to boil, put on a lid and allow to simmer until the meat is tender. If you use vegetables instead of meat, it is good to keep in mind that these should still have some chewing resistance. Keep in mind that the garnish should be “fairly” dry.

Dish up the soup and decorate with the garnish of your choice or without garnish. Serve some really nice hot bread with it.

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