Sprout salad with tamarind and peanuts
Sprout salad with tamarind and peanuts

I simply love these long-tailed green gram, commercially known as Chinese Bean Sprouts. The shelves of many a grocery store are lined with these delicious sprouts, but they are pretty easy to make at home too. Though they may not be as versatile when it comes to cooking with them, they are a healthy source of nutrients, proteins,amino acids and Vitamin B. So sprouts should be made part of your daily routine. We just par boil them and eat them with a squeeze of lime and some salt every morning with breakfast. But, this post is not about plain boring sprouts, it’s about a salad that literally explodes a million taste buds! It’s sweet, salty, crunchy, spicy, sour and most important healthy.

Let’s get down to the basics of this recipe: Do you make sprouts at home? Most of us are pretty lazy and buy them off the shelf. I am often guilty of it too, but making sprouts is very easy. All you need to do is wash the beans you want to sprout, like green gram in this case and soak it in water for 5-6 hours. Drain the water out. Wash it again. Then moisten a muslin cloth and tie the sprouts in it. Place the sprouts in the muslin cloth in a sieve and place it in a humid warm spot over 2 days. I’ve been told placing it over a metal surface aids the sprouting surface, but have never tried it out. In no time, your beans will start sprouting. The sprouting will vary depending on whether the beans have been allowed to sprout in dark spot or well-lit one. Those in darker places will be crunchier. Also if you place a light weight on the beans they will result in larger sprouts. This is what you need for this salad. But feel free to buy your sprouts ready-made too.

Putting together this salad is a matter of seconds, if you have all the ingredients. It needs a tamarind chutney, tomato and sweet chilli sauce and some tomato ketchup. Again both these sauces can also be bought of the shelf…though if you click on the link, you will get to a super easy recipe.

The hero of the dish: Chinese bean sprouts
The hero of the dish: Chinese bean sprouts

Time taken: 9 hours  

Soaking time: 8 hours

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

Skill level: Child Friendly

Equipment Needed: Blender, muslin cloth, sieve

Ingredients:

  • 200 grams Chinese bean sprouts
  • 10-12 yellow and red cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3-4 leaves of Bok Choy, cut into strips
  • 10-12 leaves of roquette,cut into strips
  • 2 tablespoons of tamarind chutney
  • 2 tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon of tomato ketchup (only if you need to adjust the sweetness)
  • 1/4 cup coarsely crushed peanuts
  • To taste: lemon, salt, sugar, pepper, chilli powder (optional)

Method:

Simply add everything you wish to this salad, left over greens fit in well
Simply add everything you wish to this salad, left over greens fit in well, you can add coloured bell peppers, cabbage and even zucchini

1. Par boil the beans, some people find it difficult to digest raw sprouts and it leads to digestive problems, par boiling the sprouts will prevent the gassy built up/situation.

2. Add the greens and tomatoes to the beans and let it cool.

I've carried this mortar and pestle all the way from Bangkok, it's one of the most over used equipment in my kitchen!
I’ve carried this mortar and pestle all the way from Bangkok, it’s one of the most over used equipment in my kitchen!

3. In a mortar and pestle, crush the peanuts.

4. Just before serving the salad, add the sauce, chutney and mix the salad up well. Taste it, it needs to be lip smacking delicious. If you wish you can add lemon, salt, sugar, pepper, chilli powder and tomato ketchup to adjust the salad to your liking. Finally sprinkle the peanuts on top. Give it a quick stir. Serve immediately.

A favourite salad: goes well with croquettes or even a grilled protein
A favourite salad: goes well with croquettes or even a grilled protein

 

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