This is another Filipino food that I really missed but not anymore because only recently a friend of mine, who is also a Filipina I met here in Germany invited me over her place with our other friends for a Filipino lunch! She served Ginisang Munggo or Mung Bean Soup with other equally missed dishes! It is truly a feast whenever we have this get together. It is not like I do not cook Filipino food at home, I actually do quite often but sharing them with another Filipino makes the food extra special and more enjoyable. (Sorry hon, it does not mean I do not enjoy sharing meals with you, ok :-o). I think it is because somehow we get to recreate that homey atmosphere even when we are miles away from our real home. Filipino family meals are typically loud with a lot of chatting, telling stories or even sharing jokes and ‘chismis’ (gossips) and growing up in a family of seven, it can really get loud sometimes, especially since my Papa loves telling jokes and he can really tell them! 🙂
Monggo beans are not a common commodity here in Germany, but I learned from my friend that I can get them from the Asian shop where we also buy some foodstuff. After our lunch, she gave me some of the soup and other food to take home (typical for Filipinos) and Armin and I had them for dinner. I was surprised that he liked it so much, he said it is almost like the “Linsensuppe” (Lentil soup) they have here in Germany. The next time I tried cooking it myself, he asked me to put slices of sausage to his bowl of soup and it was also good!
My version of this soup, like my Mama’s, is pureed and really thick. The beans will expand and soften when it cooks and skin from beans will float, you can remove them using a strainer if desired but not really necessary if you will puree it. I like it best with young leaves of ampalaya or bitter gourd but since it is not available in Germany, it also tastes delicious with spinach and I used the ones I just harvested from my container garden.
Mung Bean Soup (Ginisang Munggo)
- 2 cups mung bean - (Monggo Beans) - washed and drained
- 5 cups water
- 2 cloves garlic - - minced
- 1 small onion - chopped
- 1 piece tomato - - sliced
- 3.5 ounces pork - - sliced thinly
- 2 cups bitter gourd - (ampalaya) - leaves or fruit or spinach
- 1/2 cup smoked fish meat - (optional) - (tinapa) - shredded
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce - or 1 tablespoon salt
- In a pan, boil the Monggo beans in 5 cups of water. Cover and let cook until tender about 30-40 minutes.
- Once cooked transfer beans with water in a deep bowl if using a stab mixer or in a blender, pulse to make a puree.
- On the same pan, heat oil then saute garlic, onion and tomato until tender. Add pork slices and fish sauce and let cook for 3-4 minutes. If using salt, it may be added on the last step instead.
- Add back the pureed Monggo beans to the pan. When it starts to simmer, add the bitter gourd or spinach. Smoked fish meat (Tinapa) may be added same time. Let it simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
- Transfer to your soup bowl and serve while hot.