Recipe for Beans Usili. Paruppu Usili with Beans. Traditional Tamil kitchen style recipe. With step by step pictures.
Usili is a very traditional dish made in Tamilnadu and is very popular among the brahmin community. My friend Priya is married to a Tamil Brahmin and she learnt this recipe after marriage. Its a Tam-Brahm recipe as we call it. When I first heard it from her, I dint know what she was talking about. I have never heard of the word usili till then. But its such a common dish in her family and I learnt it later from her. Its such a delicious recipe that goes so well with rice for lunch along with sambar or rasam. The lentils are cooked and roasted till they are nutty and veggies are added along with a tempering. Beans is a very traditional veggie used in usili. There are so many variations that are available and this is Priya’s recipe. The original recipe does not use onions. But I like it in the recipe and so I have added onions too. Here is how to do tamil style Beans Paruppu Usili.
Soak the chana dal in water for one hour. Drain the water after soaking. Grind the chana dal with salt, asafoetida and dried red chillies. Do not add any water while grinding. Pulse it several times.
Oil an idli plate and place the ground mixture on the plate. Fill about half an inch of water in a pressure cooker and place the idli plate on the cooker. Pressure cook the mixture for 2 whistles. Switch off the flame. Let the pressure from the cooker release naturally. Let the mixture cool. Once the mixture is cool, crumble the mixture onto a plate. Set aside.
Wash and clean the beans. Now we need to de-string the beans. This is an important step as the strings are very fibrous and not pleasant to eat. Snap off the tip of one end of the bean with a paring knife and pull the string like below. Snap and pull other end of the bean too. Discard the snapped-off ends and strings. Note that the tender young bean might not have strings. So just snap off the ends alone. Finely chop the beans and steam the beans in a pressure cooker for two to three whistles until tender. Set aside.
Many people have asked me about the small pressure cooker that I use for my recipes. Its a 3 litre prestige stainless steel pressure cooker thats so perfect for my small family and I use it for everything. Boiling rice, lentils, veggies, steaming idlis etc.. Its such a multi tasker and does not consume lots of space. Here is where you can buy it online.
Prestige Deluxe Alpha Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker, 3 Litres
Now, back to the recipe.
Heat oil in a pan and add in the mustard seeds, dried red chillies and curry leaves. Let the mustard seeds splutter. Add in the finely chopped onions and fry till the onions are soft. Add in the crumbled lentils and fry for a good 6-7 minutes.
Roasting the lentils until light brown is very important for this recipe. Roasting the lentils gives a very nice flavor to the dish. Once the lentils are nicely roasted, add in the cooked beans, salt and turmeric. Fry for 5 minutes.
Switch off the flame and serve the beans paruppu usili.
Paruppu usili is usually served for lunch with Rasam and Sambar.
Paruppu Usili Recipe / Beans Usili Tamil Style
Recipe for Beans Usili. Paruppu Usili with Beans. Traditional Tamil kitchen style recipe.
- Total Time: 40 mins
- Yield: 4 persons 1x
For Steaming Lentils
- 1/2 cup chana dal
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 dried red chillies
- 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida
- 1/8 teaspoon vegetable oil, for oiling idli plate
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 dried red chillies
- 2 sprigs curry leaves
- 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 250 grams beans, cleaned and finely chopped
- Soak the chana dal in water for one hour. Drain the water after soaking. Grind the chana dal with salt, asafoetida and dried red chillies. Do not add any water while grinding.
- Oil an idli plate and place the ground mixture on the plate. Pressure cook the mixture for 2 whistles. Switch off the flame. Once the mixture is cool, crumble the mixture onto a plate. Set aside.
- Wash and clean the beans.Finely chop the beans and steam the beans in a pressure cooker for two to three whistles until tender. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a pan and add in the mustard seeds, dried red chillies and curry leaves. Let the mustard seeds splutter. Add in the finely chopped onions and fry till the onions are soft. Add in the crumbled lentils and fry for a good 6-7 minutes.
- Once the lentils are nicely roasted, add in the cooked beans, salt and turmeric. Fry for 5 minutes.
- Switch off the flame and serve the beans paruppu usili.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Category: Stir-fry
- Cuisine: South Indian, Tamilnadu
13 thoughts on “Beans Usili Recipe, Paruppu Usili Recipe, Usili”
The recipients linda interesting but I was confused as the ingredients required was not clear.
Hi Suguna, Love your recipes. Particularly enjoy this paruppu usili recipe. Would you be able to include serving information in cups/half cups? That will help a lot with figuring out how many calories I’m consuming day to day.
I tried beans usili step by step as u have explained. One small doubt: parrupu and beans did’nt combine with each other. Could you please give me a suggestion?
Hi Rekha. They are supposed to be separate. Just break the lentil balls into small pieces and saute till they are golden!
Nice post. Liked the tips. Hope you don’t mind.
Would like to suggest that try making this recepie without onions and just use the main vegetable of choice. One can enjoy the pure taste of that vegetable in the dish as is. Using onions is fine but it would dominate the overall flavor as usual.
My Brahmin friend makes this without onions and they taste awesome!
Hi Srilakshmiji As you told we need not add Onions. If add Onions the real taste will not be there. I appreciate you.
First time I’m posting a comment in a website.i’m really impressed by your recipes and the way you explain.hats off to you.i have become your fan?
Thank you so much Supriya Balakumar.
Made paruppu usili with beans.. Always heard of this dish from my brahmin friends, never tried. I always thought it has something to do with toor dal. After reading this recipe, I came to know it is channa dal and immdly gave a try. Very tasty indeed. Nice way to make kids eat veggies and greens too..
I am from coimbatore. I just love your recipes, I am a research scholar and am just following your recipes without any hesitation. Cooking is a good refreshment for me. Thank you akka.
Thank you so much Madhu. I am really happy that you find happiness in cooking. Keep cooking!
Suguna, have a few “time tested” tips for paruppu usili (hope you don’t mind):
> Adding few curry leaves along with red chillies and asafoetida while grinding the paruppu adds an extra flavour and nice look too. We also add about 2 shallots along with the other ingredients.
> And also, as a tip, its good to grind (pulse) the chillies, curry leaves and shallots first and then add the paruppu along with a pinch of turmeric (else with the lentils added, at times, the chillies remain intact since we do not add any water).
> And also while steaming, add little gingelly oil to the ground paruppu mixture. This helps the paruppu to loosen up when crumbling later.
> when crumbling the boiled paruppu, grease your fingers/palm with gingelly oil and also add a teaspoon or more of oil to the paruppu mixture. It becomes easy to crumble the daal and also it makes the paruppu softer.
> Usually, we steam the paruppu mixture (in a separate container) along with rice in the pressure cooker. The mixture is placed along the walls of the container leaving a gap in the centre and no water is to be added. When done, the mixture would seem hard and as one lump. You need to allow it to cool completely and follow above step.
> The best vegetable combo for usili is kothavarangai (cluster beans) but is also good with beans, cabbage (to be cut into thin strips), avarakkaai or carrot (to be cut into small cubes and boiled). But my most favourite is vazhaipoo (yes, banana flower!). Though a little time consuming, the taste is awesome – you should try it. The colour would turn out brown rather than yellow as in the case of usili with other vegies mentioned above.
Thank you Ravi for your tips. I feel each and every house has mastered the recipes passed on from their mothers.