Beans Paruppu Usili Recipe | Beans Usili Recipe

Whole Food Plant Based Recipes

Fri Apr 24, 2020

Vegan Beans Paruppu Usili Recipe

Simple dish with a combination of French beans and Lentil or grams! Here's an Usili Recipe without a drop of oil, yet light and fluffy. Check out how we did it!

Whole Food Plant Based Beans Paruppu Usili Recipe

Course: Course 2 (Vegetable Dish) for Lunch & Dinner Meals
Cuisine: Tamil Recipe from South India
Prep Time: 15 min
Passive Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Servings: 2 cups


200 grams Beans
1/2 cup Toor dal / Split Pigeon Pea
1/2 cup Bengal Gram Dal
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
1/2 Green Chili
1 tsp Black Pepper Powder
1 sprig Curry Leaves
1 pinch Asafoetida / Hing
4 tsp Miso Paste (Healthy Salt Alternative. See Nutrition Science Highlights below)
1 tbsp Cashews, chopped


Paruppu (Dal)
  1. Wash and soak toor dal and bengal gram dal in water for at least one hour.
  2. Drain water and grind dals into a chunky paste along with turmeric powder. Do not add water. The batter must be thick.
  3. Steam cook the batter into idlis in an idli cooker. You could also spread it on a plate or wide vessel to cook it in a steamer. If you don't have either of these, take a big vessel with water. Place an upturned cup with a flat base in the centre of the vessel and keep your plate of dal batter on top of it. Ensure that the vessel isn't much wider than the plate - it could fall and create a mess! Cook until done.
  4. Once it is cooked, take it out and let it cool completely. This is when it gets its crumby texture. Keep aside.
  5. Place the idlis one by one in a mixie and pulse for just one second or less each, so that they are ground into a fluffy crumble. If you grind them for more than a second, they will become a thick paste. Avoid this.
  6. Dry roast mustard seeds. When they start popping, mix into paruppu usili.
  7. Mix paruppu usili with black pepper powder, curry leaves, hing / asafoetida, miso paste, and chopped cashews.


  1. String and cut beans into small pieces. Boil them in a vessel with closed lid. Use just enough water to cover less than one third of the beans, so there is no water left when the beans are cooked.

Final Beans Paruppu Usili Recipe

  1. Mix the cooked beans and paruppu (dal). Be gentle so the paruppu remains fluffy.
  2. Garnish with some more fresh coconut and curry leaves or coriander leaves.

Plant Based Chef Pro Tips for Best Beans Paruppu Usili Recipe

  1. Properly cooked Paruppu Usli should be light and crumby to touch, not heavy and wet.
  2. This is a heavy-to-digest dish, and is normally served with other light side dishes that aid digestion - usually rasam or pepper sambar (milagu kuzhambu). Check out obbattu saaru to find out how to make lip smacking rasam without oil or tamarind!
  3. Many other vegetables can also be used to prepare Paruppu Usli, like cluster beans (kotthavarangai), banana flower, and cabbage.
  4. Adding a greater proportion of toor dal will give you a softer Usuli.

Nutrition Science Highlights for WFPB Obbattu Saaru Recipe

  1. Why Miso Paste? Miso paste is fermented & salted soya bean paste. American Heart Association Maximum recommended maximum daily salt intake of 3.75 grams per person to minimise risk of high blood pressure, stomach cancer and chronic kidney disease. In addition to helping us restrict salt intake, replacing salt with miso paste also helps by neutralising the negative effects of salt by soya phytonutrients. You can easily make fresh miso paste at home by mixing 100 grams of cooked soya paste with 10 grams of salt, or 10 tablespoons of cooked soya paste with 1 tablespoon of salt. If making at home, ensure to use immediately, or freeze in batches to use later. Or, simply use 3.75 grams of salt or less per day per person and add 18 to 20 grams (dry weight) of soya beans in any dishes, spread through the day!
  2. Why legumes? Legumes are the #1 number food associated with long life in many recent large studies! They also fuel your gut microbiome through their resistant starch content and slow down glucose absorption, keeping your blood sugar levels steady - even in the next meal! This has been called the Second Meal Effect. This recipe is one of the yummiest ways to include pulses and legumes in your daily diet.
  3. Why not tadka? Tadka, thaaLippu, oggaraNe. Tempering spices in oil is quintessential to Indian cuisine. This practice may have started as a compromise when whole nuts were unavailable, and indeed, is more common in inland, drier areas where nuts do not grow easily, all year round. You can enjoy the taste and fragrance, though, by just dry roasting the spices you require, without the oil, or even better, mixing spice powders directly into your dish!

Dr Achyuthan Eswar
Lifestyle Physician & Co-founder,, PHC Lifestyle Clinic & Plant-based Kitchen


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