Curried Mung Bean Soup, Kimchi, Chili Oil
A Trip to The Dish Factory
Neither this soup nor a trip to The Dish Factory are for the faint of heart. Asian-fusion-style mung bean soup is flavored with hot muchi curry powder, garnished with pungent kimchi, and dotted with chili oil. Located in the center of Downtown LA, The Dish Factory is housed in an old four-story building with rickety flooring, steep stairwells, and dark hallways.
Carrying the largest china inventory in the Western US and all sorts of restaurant equipment with 60,000 sq. ft. of merchandise at heavily discounted prices, I was absolutely ecstatic when my dear friends and fabulous restaurateurs Scott & Gina Lee invited me to join them on a dish excursion. I had been lusting after top restaurants’ super-wide rimmed plates and bowls for a while, as the portion-size is petite but the presentation is dramatic. Perfect, in fact, for this vibrant soup.
Curried Mung Bean Soup Recipe
- 1 c. dried peeled yellow mung beans
- olive oil
- 1/2 c. diced onion
- 1/4 c. diced carrot
- 1/4 c. diced celery
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- 1/3 c. sake
- 1 qt. vegetable stock
- muchi curry powder to taste
- sea salt to taste
Soak dried mung beans in water for 6 hours or overnight. In a soup pot: sauté onion, carrot, celery in a generous amount of olive oil until soft. Add garlic and sauté for a couple more minutes. Add rinsed/drained mung beans and stir to coat with the olive oil. Add sake and cook until evaporated. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Simmer 45 minutes to one hour, stirring occasionally. Season with curry powder then sea salt to taste.
Slice cabbage kimchi into strips. Toss kimchi with thin slices of fresh scallion. Ladle soup into warmed wide-rimmed shallow bowls. Place a mound kimchi in the center. Serve with chili oil on the side.