Guest Author - Chidori Phillips
Mung bean sprouts make quick, delicious aeomono (cooked, chilled dressed salad). Aemono means “to mix” (aeru) and “things” (mono). It can be confused with sunomono which are vinegared salads and tsukemono which are pickled foods. But in aemono, the vegetables are cooked briefly.
I love this crunchy, lemony salad that is so simple to prepare. A cold water rinse after a light blanching in boiling water helps the sprouts retain their crispness. Fresh lemons, a bit of sugar, soy sauce and optionally, toasted sesame oil, combine for a vibrant dressing.
While the blanched sprouts should marinate in the dressing, it doesn’t take long for them to absorb the flavors so 20-30 minutes in the refrigerator is sufficient. The longer they sit, the more body they’ll lose so there’s no need to overdo the marinating session. Garnish with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
Moyashi no Aemono
¼ lb. fresh mung bean sprouts, rinsed
1 quart water
½ cup fresh lemon juice (must be fresh!)
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
3 Tbsp. sugar
½ tsp. toasted sesame oil
sesame seeds, for garnishing
In a large pot, bring one quart of water to a rolling boil. Turn off heat. Drop in rinsed fresh bean sprouts and stir for about 15 seconds. Pour into a colander and immediately rinse with cold water until the heat is gone. Drain well. Place into a non-aluminum bowl.
In a smaller bowl, blend together the fresh lemon juice, soy sauce, sugar and toasted sesame oil. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Pour over the blanched bean sprouts. Toss. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled. Before serving, toss again, place onto serving platter and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Other fresh sprouts may be dressed with this same marinade. Try sprouting your own at home from seeds. It's fun, easy and fresh.