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I heart paruppu usili and mor kuzhambu. It is a staple weekend lunch once in every fifteen days along with lemon rasam and some appalam and vathal. Even thinking of it, makes me want to go the kitchen and get it done. And, this is one lunch combo that can be done in a jiffy. No elaborate soaking of tamarind and all.

Anyway, today shall be paruppu usili day. We shall schedule the other stuff for later. Paruppu Usili is mostly a TamBrahm side dish which can be made using french beans, kothavarangai (cluster beans), avaraikkai (hyacinth beans), vazhaipoo (banana flower)! I can think of only so many vegetables. It can also be prepared without any vegetables. This is a very auspicious side dish which is prepared during marriages and festivals alike. Awesomely tasty too!

A closer look!

A closer look!

Anyway, the ingredients needed here are-

Cluster beans – 1 cup chopped fine.
Toor Dal – 1 cup (We like equal quantities of vegetables and dal. You can use lesser amount of toor dal if you wish to!)
Dry Red Chilli – 2 (I don’t make it very spicy ‘cos of the children. You can add more chillis too!)
Asafoetida / Hing / Perungaayam – 1/2 tsp
Oil – 4 tblspn
Mustard Seeds / Kadugu – 1 tsp
Urad dal / Uluttam Paruppu – 1 tsp
Salt to taste


– Wash the dal. Now soak the dal for about 1-2 hours. Drain them and set aside.

–Β Take beans and salt in a microwave safe bowl and cover it with water. Add salt enough for the beans alone. Cook it till the beans is completely cooked. (You can alternatively cook the beans on the stove-top too!)

–Β Take dry red chilli, salt (just enough for the dal), asafoetida and toor dal in a mixer and grind them to a coarse paste. It should be like how you grind for paruppu vadai. One or two dal can be left without being ground too!

(At this stage, I am going to commit a blasphemy. You can add a little bit of saunf (fennel seeds) and 3 to 4 pods of garlic and grind along with the toor dal mixture. I call it blasphemy ‘cos the dish is a TamBrahm one and both saunf and garlic are forbidden in our households. Yet, this combination works wonders too!)

– Heat oil in a kadai. Add in mustard. Once it splutters, and the urad dal.

– Now add in the ground dal mixture and keep frying for sometime, about five to seven minutes. The mixture should become crumbly and should be cooked to three fourths.

– Now add in the cooked beans and mix well with the dal. Simmer the flame and keep the mixture in it for about another ten minutes. The beans will absorb the flavour of the dal. The dal would become crispy which would taste heavenly.

– Serve hot with rice and mor kuzhambu.

How does that look!

How does that look!

Enjoy. Peace out.