Adzuki beans (pronounced as azuki beans) are pretty looking tiny grains with a beautiful burgundy color. They have been grown for many centuries in countries like Japan, China and India. They are not just rich in proteins and carbohydrates but are so easy to digest in comparison to other beans. Adzuki beans are pumped with folate, zinc, iron, magnesium, proteins and fiber. It is also becoming a favourite among health freaks as 1 cup of adzuki beans has more soluble fiber than pinto or black beans. The soluble fiber in adzuki beans can help to lower cardiovascular problems in your body. When homocysteine (an amino acid) level goes up, there is an increased chance of blockage in your blood vessels and arteries. The folate present in these beans help to reduce homocysteine level in the blood. Also the magnesium and potassium present in any food will help to lower the blood pressure and help in muscle relaxation and improved blood flow.If you are watching what you eat or on a weight loss journey or watching your cholesterol, then this bean is a keeper in your pantry. Since they are low glycemic food, it keeps you full for longer and helps to balance your blood sugar well. A can of organic adzuki beans from whole foods costs you close to $2-3 and when made with tons of onions and tomatoes, the curry will come for two dinners. That’s a pocket friendly deal right?
They have a nutty taste and has mild sweetness in it. I have been using the organic can version but dry ones work great too. All you have to do it clean, rinse and soak it overnight. Discard the soaking liquid and pressure cook it with water enough to soak them for 1 whistle ( or cook in boiling water for 45-60 minutes). My curry can be saved in airtight container for a week and refrigerate itto keep it fresh for long.
They are called as chavali / chawli in Marathi, chori in Hindi and chowra in Gujarati. Thanks to my friend Manisha Pandit for this information. Check her blog and I am sure you will learn a lot about Indian ingredients and their usage. She is also a contributing write for Whole foods market cooking in Boulder.
ADZUKI BEANS MASALA
1 can (15oz) adzuki beans (Eden Organic brand) or raw ones (soaked and pressure cooked)
1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
10 curry leaves
1 large onion – chopped
1 tablespoon ginger – minced
1 tablespoon garlic – minced
1teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder
1 tablespoon coriander powder
1tablespoon tomato paste
1 or 2 cups water
1/3 cup thick coconut milk
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 cup cilantro – chopped
1. Heat oil until they smoke a bit. Throw in the curry leaves and saute for 30 seconds, let it crisp up. Then add onions and little salt and let it brown, approximately 10 minutes on a medium flame.
2. Add the minced ginger and garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Sprinkle turmeric, chili and coriander powder and cook till the raw smell disappears. Mix in the tomato paste and pour 2 cups of water and cook approximately for 20 minutes covered. Finally add the cooked adzuki beans, coconut milk and stir to mix well. Cook covered for 5 minutes on medium-low flame to let the spices simmer with the beans.
3. Pour the lemon juice over and garnish with garam masala and cilantro. Stir to combine and serve hot with rice/ roti.
1. An ideal side dish for South beach diet phase 1, 2 and 3
2. Since it has low glycemic index, my adzuki beans curry can be eaten during gestational diabetes and by those who have type 2 diabetes.
3. Also perfect dish to eat with chapati or tortilla for those who are on a weightloss journey.