Remedy Recipe Review: Mung Bean and Kelp Soup

Dried Kelp

The Traditional Chinese Mung Bean Soup is actually a desert item used to cool folks in the summer.  I learned about this from the Chinese Herbalist we have been seeing for our daughter. She recommended it to me during this past illness – I was a little hesitant to try it, but pleasantly surprised by both the taste and affect it had on me. It felt great smoothly going down my sore throat.  It was even better than Chicken Soup! Don’t get me wrong. They are two totally different soups with opposite flavors. But, both have their place in helping me feel better.

Remedy: Mung Beans are supposed to help with edema, and removing toxins ingested from plants or minerals. It is traditionally used as a summer soup to cool the body, and eaten cold. Kelp is a natural source of Iodine and helps to reduce swollen glands.  As with any remedy, I was told to use this in balance – so not the only thing I am eating. It was also explained to me that Kelp varies in Iodine content so if you have Thyroid issues, this is probably a home remedy you need to talk with your doctor about using.

Recipe:

Mung Bean Kelp Soup

Soaked and ready: Mung Beans and Kelp

– 1/2 Cup Dried Mung Beans

– 2 inch Piece Dried Kelp

– About 4 Cups Soaking Water

– 6 Cups Cooking Water

– Brown Sugar to Taste

– Salt to Taste

Mung Beans are done.

First, soak the Mung Beans and Kelp in a bowl of water for at least 4 hours, or up to 24 hours.  Drain the water from the soaking Mung Bean and Kelp, then break up the Kelp into strips or small pieces.  Add 6 cups water to a pot, then add the Mung Beans and Kelp. Bring pot to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Let the soup simmer for 60-80 minutes or until the Mung Beans become so soft that they start to come out of their skin.

Serve warm or cold, then add Brown Sugar or sweetener of choice (Maple Syrup, Honey, Sucanat, etc) and a little salt. Makes 3 large bowls, or 4 small ones. The recipe can be increased or reduced to accommodate your servings. Use within 3 days or toss leftovers.

Finished Soup!

Review: This is really tasty, even if it looks ugly!  With swollen glands and a sore throat, I felt this was really soothing. It had a lightly sweet and savory flavor unlike anything else I’ve tasted. The texture was a little bit like a bean soup with onions. I enjoyed it. But, the kids wouldn’t try it.

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About Holli

A "cooking from scratch" geek, Mom, Wife, Seattle Native, Photographer and serial volunteer.
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5 Responses to Remedy Recipe Review: Mung Bean and Kelp Soup

  1. kaarisa says:

    This soup is worth the effort, I used a few inches of Nori which I had on hand for making sushi. I found the soup to be hearty and yet light. I sweetened it with maple sugar. I could see an addition of maybe rice wine vinegar for a sweet and sour ? Or would that negate the benefits?

  2. holliwithani says:

    I don’t know, but I will look into it.

    • holliwithani says:

      I just learned that Nori isn’t recommended. There are 124 species of brown algae or “Kelp” but the kind that the Traditional Chinese use in Mung Bean Soup is not Nori. Our herbalist recommended simply buying dried Kelp from an Asian store, not something prepped for wrapping Sushi. I’ve purchased my Kelp directly from her for under $10 (enough to make over 12 batches).

      I forgot to ask about the Rice Wine Vinegar, but did learn that they usually add some dried citrus peel (it’s like a tangerine but a China specific variety) to add an extra kick or flavor. Once I get to try it out, I’ll post another revised recipe.

  3. Pingback: Sprouted Mung Bean Review « Holli with an i

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