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Cluster Beans Usili

Cluster beans, commonly referred to as “Kothavarangai” (கொத்தவரங்காய்) in Tamil, are packed with fiber and proteins, along with a variety of other essential nutrients that offer numerous health benefits.

“Usili” translates to “crumbled” in English. This dish involves soaking lentils, grinding them into a paste, steaming them, and then crumbling them to be added to a curry. Vegetable Usili can be made using beans, cabbage, or plantain flower also. Alternatively, a plain dal Usili can be made without any added vegetables.

Cluster Beans Usili

Recipe by S Kamala
Recipe rating: N/A
Course: Poriyal, SidesCuisine: Indian, TamilDifficulty: Medium


Prep time


Cooking time



Discover the nutritional benefits of cluster beans, also known as “Kothavarangai” in Tamil. High in fiber and protein, they offer numerous health advantages.


  • Cluster Beans – Cut into small pieces 1 big bowl

  • Thuvar dal – 1/2 cup

  • Bengal gram dal – 1/2 cup

  • Red chillies – 2 to 3 Nos

  • Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon

  • Sambar Powder – 1 teaspoon

  • A pinch of asafetida

  • Coconut gratings – two tablespoons (optional)

  • Oil – 1 tablespoon

  • Mustard – 1 teaspoon

  • Curry leaves few

  • Salt – 1 teaspoon or as per taste


  • Wash and 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 7 to 10 minutes. Remove it and cool it. Break it by your fingers into tiny bits.
  • Put cluster beans pieces in a vessel and add sambar powder, turmeric powder and little salt along with enough water to cover the vegetable. Cook on medium flame till it is soft. Drain the excess water and keep aside.
  • In a kadai put the oil. When it is hot add mustard. When it pops up add curry leaves, a pinch of asafoetida powder and then add cooked dhal and fry for a while.
  • Then add cooked vegetable and fry for one minute.
  • Then add coconut gratings and mix well. Keep it stove for one more minute and remove.

Recipe Video


  • You can make vegetable Usili using beans, cabbage or plantain flower. You can also make plain dal Usili without any vegetable.
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