Red Chori (Red Moong Beans)

I recently made a new discovery! While browsing through the isles of my local Indian grocery store, I spotted a packet of little oval-shaped, deep red colored beans. I picked it up to get a closer look and noticed that the label said, “Red Chori (Red Moong Beans)”. I brought it home with me to make a delicious new concoction: Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 

Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 

It was the first time I had found this packet on the shelf amongst other beans and I realized that the beans did, in fact, look like moong (aka mung) beans, except they were red in color instead of the green ones that I was familiar with. In addition, they were also slightly larger in size, somewhere between the regular green moong beans and the black eyed beans. 

Popular in Asian Cuisines 

I was certainly intrigued and quickly pulled out my phone to Google it up. I found out that red moong beans were more popularly known as adzuki or aduki beans that have a sweet, nutty flavor. It is the same beans that are used to make the popular Asian red bean paste that is used in several Asian cuisines…and suddenly a light bulb inside my head turned on! I’ve had it in mochi, the Japanese dessert! Later, I also discovered them in canned form at another local grocery store!

I remembered the delightful sweet taste of the mochi filled with the red bean paste and decided to bring the packet home with me to put an Indian spin on it. However, instead of attempting a dessert recipe with those beans, I created an Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry with it. I thought I’d try them out by whipping up a humble stew for dinner, similar to the dal or curry I often make with the green moong beans. 

Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 

A Nutrition Powerhouse

These legumes are a nutrition powerhouse and offer many health benefits! They are low in calories, high in fiber, rich in proteins, vitamins, iron and other minerals like potassium, folate, magnesium, and manganese. Adzuki beans are special among all the types of moong beans as they contain essential amino acids and a variety of easily digestible carbohydrates. Adding red moong beans to your diet is great for lowering cholesterol, improving liver function and balancing your blood sugar levels.

Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 

Quick and Easy Recipe with the Instant Pot

So as to make it simple, quick and easy for cooking on a weeknight, I pulled out my super friendly kitchen gadget, the Instant Pot. Cooking beans in a pot over the stove can be inconsistent and can take up to an hour, even after soaking them but with the electric pressure cooker, they’re done in a fraction of time, about 20 minutes…and no soaking required! They pressure cook to a perfect texture every single time – soft and creamy while still holding their shape. 

Since I was making the curry for dinner that night, I decided to turn it into a hearty and wholesome meal by stirring in some beet greens that I had on hand into the mix and cooking some brown basmati rice pot-in-pot at the same time. Dinner was ready in less than an hour and I served it in the form of a comforting rice bowl, garnished with chopped cilantro along with some cooling beets and yogurt raita on the side. 

Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 

I’ve linked a short video below that I put together for you that you can follow and easily whip up this signature concoction in your own kitchen.

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Indian Red Moong & Beet Greens Curry 


  • Author: Vasanti
  • Yield: Serves 4

Description

A spicy Indian-style stew made in an electric pressure cooker with the red moong/mung or adzuki beans and beet greens.


Ingredients

Scale

For the Stew

  • 1 cup red moong beans (see variations below)
  • green leaves from 1 bunch of beets, roughly chopped (see variations below)
  • 2 tbsp neutral oil of choice
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  • 23 dried red chilies, optional, broken into halves
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • regular Indian red chili powder, to taste
  • 2 tsp Maharashtrian Kala/ Goda masala (homemade or store-bought) or garam masala
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • 2 cups water

For the Rice (optional, if cooking pot-in-pot)

  • 1 cup brown basmati rice
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Instructions

Making the Stew

 

  • Rinse the red beans in a sieve under cold tap water and set aside. 
  • Place the inner pot in the Instant Pot and press the Sauté button. When the display shows “Hot” add in the oil along with the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and asafoetida. When the seeds splutter, add in the smashed garlic and the dried red chilies. Sauté for 30 seconds and then add in the onion. Sprinkle some salt to help the onions soften and sauté for about 5 minutes till they turn translucent, stirring frequently. 
  • Stir in the turmeric, red chili powder and the kala/goda masala or garam masala and sauté for 30 seconds to let the spices bloom. 
  • Add in the chopped tomato and stir to combine. Deglaze the bottom of the pot by scraping with the cooking spoon. This is an important step. If the bottom of the pot is not deglazed well, the “Burn” error might appear during the pressure-cooking stage. 
  • Continue cooking for another 5 minutes till the tomatoes are soft and lose most of their moisture. 
  • Press the Cancel button to turn the Instant Pot off. 
  • Stir in the chopped beet greens and the rinsed red beans and toss to combine well.
  • Pour in the water and stir well, ensuring the leaves and the beans are well immersed in the liquid. 

 

Making the Rice Pot-in-pot

 

  • For pot-in-pot rice, place a trivet over the uncooked beans and greens mixture at the bottom of the pot.
  • Rinse and drain a cup of brown basmati rice. Add rice along with 1½ cups of water in a stainless steel Instant Pot insert and then place it over the trivet.

 

Pressure Cooking 

 

  • Close the lid and turn the steam release valve to the sealing position. Press the Multigrain button and the Adjust button to select the default settings for time and pressure with 20 minutes on high pressure. Note that old beans may take longer time to cook. When cooking is complete, open the lid after the pressure has released naturally. It will take about 15-18 minutes to depressurize. 
  • Open the lid and using a pair of tongs or silicone holders, remove the insert with the brown basmati rice. Give the beans stew a quick stir and check to make sure the beans are cooked thoroughly. 
  • Serve the rice in a bowl and spoon the stew over or next to the rice. 
  • Garnish with cilantro.  Serve warm along with raita or yogurt on the side.

Keywords: Comfort Foods, Healthy Recipes, Instant Pot Recipes, Pot-in-pot Cooking, Zero-Waste Recipes, Weeknight Cooking

Step-by-Step Details

Recipe FAQ’s and Notes

Soak the Beans

If you have time, you can soak the beans in water for 4-6 hours. For soaked beans, you can reduce the pressure cooking time by half, to 10 minutes.

Store upto 5 Days

The stew will last for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Freezing Tips

You can freeze it in airtight containers for upto 6 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat in a pot over the stove, reheat frozen stew in the microwave oven or warm the frozen stew in the Instant Pot for 2 hours and it will be ready to serve.

Recipe Variations

Replace with green whole moong beans and follow the recipe as is.

You can use any other leafy greens of your choice in place of beet greens, like Swiss or rainbow chard, baby spinach, kale or collard greens.

Happy cooking
Vasanti

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Hi I’m Vasanti
…and I ❤️cooking ‘n clicking!!
I share a modern take on Indian cuisine made using nontraditional techniques and ingredients, while staying true to its authenticity. You’ll also find classic recipes from my beloved Maharashtrian culture and heritage.



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