I picked up some dried mung beans and turtle beans in Nanaimo a couple of weeks ago and have been experimenting with sprouting them. The mung beans, of course, sprout into bean sprouts, which I used in a pad thai salad I made for guests this week. The mung beans were a bit fussy in that you have to keep them in the dark while they sprout (or they turn bitter) AND they take forever to reach the size of the bean sprouts you buy in the produce section.
The black turtle beans sprouted very quickly, but I couldn’t quite figure out what to do with them. Sometimes people find the squiggly tails of the sprouted beans off-putting, so I knew I’d have to make something that mushed them up.
Oddly, the dark skins sloughed off many of the beans almost immediately, and many more sloughed off during cooking:
Unfortunately, the beans are a rather unappealing colour underneath their beautiful skin, so I was somewhat trepidatious about blending them (and indeed anticipated a grey mush).
I started off making them into a hummus, but when I tasted them before adding the tahini, I realized that the dip would be much better as a spicy, black-bean dip, so that’s what I made, and here’s my completely original (for once!!!!) recipe:
Sprout 1 cup of turtle beans for several days
Boil the beans in water for twenty minutes and strain (discarding any loose skins as you go)
Spicy Sprouted Black Bean Dip
Combine in the food processor and process until smooth:
3 cups sprouted, cooked turtle beans
6 cloves of garlic
2 TBS. lime juice
2 TBS. Frank’s hot sauce
2 tsp. BTB vegetable bouillon paste
2 sliced, seeded jalepeno peppers
1/4 cup fresh, chopped cilantro
1.5 tsp. cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1.5 tsp. chili powder
Meanwhile, chop up one white onion, and fry it in a pan sprayed with a bit of cooking oil, until nicely browned.
Add the browned onions to the food processor and process for another minute until smooth.
It’s delicious….and the colour is not nearly as grim as I expected! Indeed, the few skins that remained managed to colour the dip a nice schmecky beany colour!