One thing I’ve noticed about my storecupboard project is that I keep returning to recipes from my past: old favourites or food that has some kind of nostalgic value. This is one such meal.
It comes from my friend Marissa, who I lived with for three years back during university and for a while afterwards. Marissa, a Sri Lankan New Zealander, shared the food of her other homeland with me and I loved it – soon developing a tolerance for spicy food as she had a tendency to “slip” with the spoon as she added chilli powder!
One day she cooked a dish of mung beans, accompanied by a simple sambal known as lunu miris (though according to Wikipedia it is more properly known as katta sambal). She chopped some red onion very finely, adding salt and lots of chilli powder, and finally some lemon juice. She served it on top of the mung beans, along with some dessicated coconut. Of course in Sri Lanka fresh coconut would be used.
I had some dessicated coconut and some mung beans to use up, so this recipe was perfect. I cheated and used my mini food processor to grind everything up.
Instead of chilli powder I used minced chilli, and quite a lot of it as I find the stuff in jars very mild. I used lime juice as I think this is more traditional. In Sri Lanka they also often use a dried fish called Maldive fish. I added a few splashes of fish sauce to add a bit of fishyness to it.
Served on top of boiled mung beans with a generous amount of coconut, it brought back some very good memories.
One more category crossed off the list – the beans are all gone now!