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Folate and fibre rich food plus a delicious eggplant mung bean curry

Making this one because I’ve not been able to stop thinking about it but also to store in the freezer for post partum meals which are easy to pull, defrost, nourish and restore. The eggplant gives a really substantial element to this curry, complimented well by the mung beans.

Mung beans are some of my favourites for curries (see a delicious recipe for Green Pea Spinach and Mung Bean Curry HERE), they have a delicious flavour, but also deliver substantial amounts of fibre, plant based amino acids for protein, iron and interestingly a significant amount of folate too. Folate (Vitamin B9) during pregnancy is required to reduce the risk of neural tube and birth defects and support optimal growth of bub.

Other great food sources of folate include:

  • leafy greens
  • beetroot – yummo beetroot recipes HERE
  • eggs – plenty of delicious egg recipes HERE
  • broccoli – aim to add steamed broccoli to your curries and you’re well and truly ticking B9 box
  • citrus fruits
  • legumes (covered well and truly in a lot of my recipes!)

If you can’t find dried mung beans (different to a mung bean sprout which can carry bacterial risk for mummas during pregnancy), dried lentils or chickpeas will work just as well. If using tinned beans, rinse and drain approximately 2-3 tins of 400g beans. Always aim for BPA free or organic where possible with tinned beans and other tinned items. The BPA is used in the lining of the tin, there are now quite a few tinned brands on the market which clearly label BPA free.

 

EGGPLANT MUNG BEAN CURRY

Serves 4

Gluten free : Dairy Free : Vegetarian

1 cup (225g) dried mung beans+

3 tablespoons (45ml) coconut oil

1 large (500g) eggplant, cut into 3-4cm chunks

1 large (180g) brown onion, peeled and roughly chopped

3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced

2 teaspoons grated ginger

1 tablespoon ground cumin

2 tablespoons garam masala

pinch chilli flakes or more to taste

1/2 bunch coriander, leaves picked stalks finely chopped

1x 400g tin chopped (BPA free preferably) tomatoes

1x 400g tin (BPA free preferably) coconut milk

400ml water

sea salt and black pepper

To serve: Basmati rice, steamed greens of choice, chutney if on hand

Soak dried mung beans+ for 1-2 hours, rinse and then boil in plenty of water until tender. Rinse and drain again and set aside. Heat 2 tablespoons coconut oil in a large saucepan or deep fry pan on medium heat, add eggplant pieces and fry for 4-5 minutes to tenderise, pop a lid on to accelerate this step a little. Turn eggplant pieces frequently so they don’t stick. Remove from pan, add remaining coconut oil, onion, garlic, ginger, cumin, garam masala, chilli and coriander stalks and cook on low to medium heat for 3-4 minutes, stirring throughout, until the spices become fragrant. Add cooked mung beans, eggplant, chopped tomatoes, coconut milk, water and season with sea salt and black pepper. Bring to the boil and then reduce heat to a simmer to cook for 30-40 minutes. Serve with basmati rice, steamed greens of choice, fresh coriander leaves and any extra condiments you might have on hand to compliment this delicious dish.

Jacqueline Alwill

Jacqueline is an Accredited Nutritional Medicine Practitioner specialising in family and early childhood nutrition and gut health. She writes for several media publications, hosts a regular nutrition segment on Channel 7 and in 2016 published her first book, "Seasons to Share" (Murdoch Books). Jacqueline is passionate about working with corporations and brands to support and educate their community and audience and is currently a media spokesperson and ambassador for Remedy Drinks, Eimele Australia, Woolworths, Kitchenaid and Nutrition Director at Bondi Bubs Wholefoods. She is mum to Jet and outside her working hours you'll find her with her family in the surf, on the beach, or out and about in nature.

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