Green Beans Paruppu Usili

Beans Paruppu Usili, Tamil Recipe

Another classic Tamil dish, Paruppu Usili, is my post for today.

I love paruppu usili because it makes eating veggies even more fun. In fact, it’s like eating bhujias (which share many of the same flavors) without the guilt of eating deep-fried food. What’s more, you can make it with a variety of veggies.

I shared my broccoli paruppu usili recipe a while ago, but the green bean version is a true classic. Almost every time I have eaten paruppu usili at a relative’s home, it has been made with green beans. And it has always been beyond delicious.

I used haricot vert (French for green beans), which are skinnier and longer than the green beans found commonly in U.S. markets, but feel free to use regular green beans. I’d advise cutting them into really small pieces, though.

I won’t prattle on much because I really have to run and watch some TV: with the Olympics, the Democratic convention and the upcoming Republican convention, television hasn’t been so much fun in a long time! But first, here’s the recipe.


Green Bean Paruppu Usili
1 pound green beans, chopped finely lengthwise

1 tbsp canola oil

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp udad dal (black gram dal)

A generous pinch asafetida (hing)

1/4 cup chana dal (bengal gram dal)

1/4 cup tuvar dal

1 tsp cumin seeds

2 dry red chilies

1/2 tsp turmeric

Salt to taste

Soak the chana dal and tuvar dal in water for at least an hour. Then grind to a paste with cumin seeds, red chilies, turmeric and salt, using as little water as is feasible.

Transfer the paste to a microwave-safe bowl and zap for two minutes. Take it out, turn it around with a fork, and microwave the other side for another minute. The paste should have solidified by now. If it hasn’t, microwave it until the paste is set. Set aside.

Cook the green beans until just tender.

Heat the oil in a cast-iron or other skillet.

Add the mustard seeds and, when they pop, add the udad dal and asafetida.

When the udad dal turns lightly brown, add the beans and stir to coat.

Now crumble the ground lentil paste into the pan. Stir, breaking up any bigger pieces with the ladle. Cook until the crumbled lentils starts to turn just lightly brown and no longer taste raw.

Serve hot!

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

17 thoughts on “Green Beans Paruppu Usili

  1. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    August 28, 2008 at 1:17pm

    I know what you mean. Usili tatses a bit like parippu vadai with vegetable alongside. A favourite indeed,

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    August 28, 2008 at 2:54pm

    Hey Vaishali, I love dishes with paruppu usili, but it is a lot of work, or so I thought. Microwaving the paste instead of steaming them in idli plates (like we normally do) seems very innovative and simple… Nice, now I can make them every week! Yippie

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    August 28, 2008 at 2:59pm

    Paruppu beans is nice. Interesting to cook it this way. I normally use it in vegan dhall curry. Yummy!

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    August 28, 2008 at 3:52pm

    I never made with grinding the dhals, looks tasty the bean curry. I can imagine the taste with a simple curd rice :)

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    August 28, 2008 at 4:44pm

    Vaishali, thanks for adding me to your blogroll.
    I was reading up your views about animal cruelty. I have practically raided your blog.
    Have you seen the movie “Fast food nation?” people who have seen it would at least think twice about eating meat again.
    You are doing a great job and cheers to you! You go girl!

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    August 29, 2008 at 12:25am

    what a coincidence! I made the same curry last weekend. We call it patoli. Will be posting my version soon. Yours look more delicious and mouth-watering Vaishali!

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    August 29, 2008 at 3:58am

    I love paruppu usli. My all time fav. Yours look perfect…

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    August 29, 2008 at 5:48am

    Yes, it’s classic ..every wedding or meal must have usili..:)..healthy and lovely dish..

  9. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    August 29, 2008 at 10:07pm

    Looks delicious…I always love this dish…normally I use only chana dhal for this,next time will try it your way :)

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    August 30, 2008 at 1:21am

    I too love paruppu usili and I recently tried it with beets. And more recently tried Jai & Bee’s Asparagus usili, and was really surprised that it tasted so good.

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    August 30, 2008 at 3:21am

    That looks so good! I can imagine crumbling that seasoning on top of all kinds of food. Yum.

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    September 13, 2008 at 11:29am

    Looks like you know most of the Tamilian dishes better than us!! We make it the same way but I steam the ground lentils in cooker. Must try it in M/W next time!

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    September 26, 2009 at 2:17pm

    Hey Vaishali .. I made this last night with some good ol’ Sambar. My fiance and I devoured it!! I can’t wait to try the brocolli one. This is such a cool & new way for me to make veggie ‘upkaris’! Thanks so much for sharing!!

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