Beans Usili


  • Green French Beans (Cut into 2″ thin pieces lengthwise) – 1 big bowl
  • Thuvar dal – 1/2 cup
  • Bengal gram dal – 1/2 cup
  • Red chillies – 2 to 3 Nos
  • Sambar powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon
  • A pinch of asafetida
  • Coconut gratings – two tablespoons (optional)
  • Oil – 2 tablespoons
  • Mustard – 1 teaspoon
  • Curry leaves few
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon or as per taste


  1. Soak both the dals for two hours. Drain the water and grind along with chillies, asafetida, pinch of turmeric powder and salt to a coarse paste (like vadai dough). Grease idli plate and put the paste into that and steam it like idli for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove it and cool it. Break it by your fingers into tiny bits.
  2. In a vessel put the beans and add sambar powder, salt and sprinkle little water. Mix well. Cook on medium flame till it is cooked soft. Keep it aside.
  3. In another kadai put the remaining oil. When it is hot add mustard. When it pops up add curry leaves and then add cooked dhal and fry for a while. Then add cooked beans and mix well. Keep it on low flame for few more minutes. Then add coconut gratings and mix well. Keep it on the stove for one more minute and remove.
  4. Goes well with Mor Kuzhambu.


  1. Divya Vikram

    Love the vibrant green color!.

  2. Thank you Divya Vikram.

  3. Dear Kamala Aunty,

    Wow I missed so many delicious posts. I was busy cos I had a new addition to my family 3 months ago 🙂
    I have been referring to ur posts for sundal varieties.You have an awesome colection.Are u still in the U.S or are you back to your home?I make usili but I never add sambar podi.I will definitely try with this variation.Btw i like the way u have cut the beans.It looks different than the usual way for usili.


  4. Hi AR,

    Welcome to the New arrival. Congratulations.

    I am still in US and will be returning to India by end Dec 2010 only.

    Here in US, we get the "French Cut Beans" in packets. I used that cut beans.

  5. krishnaveni raman


    Your website is really very useful. For the first time I saw your website and I had gone through two sessions. One was kolangal or rangoli – all of them are superb, marvelous. The second is the various types of food preparations and methods illustrated. I do not know how to express my appreciation to you, in words, they are really wonderful.

  6. maheshwari

    Wow…. Mouth watering it is… When I ll b home I will dfntly try this and all kozhamb… I am from north karnataka and these are very rarely avilable dishes for me. .but now they will dance in my kitchen..Yahooo..Thanks a lot Kamalakka..

  7. Hi aunty,

    Good to have all the recipes here in your site. I read out this beans recipe to my mom.. she tried it and it came out well. 🙂

  8. Hi, I recently tried out this beans usili with ennai kathirika kuzhambu . It was amazing. I love your recipes. They have the original tamilnadu flavour in it.

    Just one doubt, I have some leftover paruppu for usili that I have steamed. Can I refrigerate and use it again. Apart from beans variety and vazhai poo, what other vegetables can I use for usili….

    • Hi Raynu,

      Thank you for visiting my site and trying the recipes. You can refrigerate the left over steamed dhal. You can make Kara Kozhuttai using the dhal as stuffing. You can use “Cluster Beans” (Kothavarankai), cabbage and make usili. Just season it and have it as Plain Usili.

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