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Paruppu Usili

-Submitted by Dahlia on 16th Jun 2008

(Lentil Crumbled)

Cluster beans / French beans/ Green beans / Broad beans Usili

Cluster beans / French beans/ Green beans / Broad beans Usili

Paruppu Usili is a simple authentic South Indian side dish that can be served with rice, any curry and papad. Paruppu stands for lentil (dal) and usili stands for crumbled. This dish is popular among the Tamil Brahmin community and is a must dish in their wedding menu. I first tasted this in one of my Iyengar friend's wedding. I loved it so much that I got the recipe form her mom the next time I spoke to her. It is little lengthy to make paruppu usili but the end result is so good that you will never regret your efforts.

Here I have given the general recipe that can be followed to make any kind of usili. It is basically lentils that are soaked, ground and then roasted till it crumbles up. This is often combined with a cooked vegetable. However, paruppu usili can be made plain without adding any vegetables too. The best part about the dish is that even picky eaters start enjoying vegetables. Different vegetables can be incorporated in the recipe like french beans(Beans paruppu usili), cluster beans, cabbage (cabbage paruppu usili), broccoli (broccoli paruppu usili), radish (mullangi paruppu usili), asparagus (asparagus paruppu usili), carrot (carrot paruppu usili), beetroot (beetroot paruppu usili), banana flower (vazhapoo paruppu usili) etc.

Recipe For Paruppu Usili

Preparation time: 1 hour (including soaking time)
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4


  • Chana dal (Kadalai paruppu) -1/4 cup (soaked)
  • Red chilies - 4 
  • Hing (Asafoetida) -1/4 tsp
  • Green Beans/ Banana flower/ Cluster beans (You can use any vegetable) -1 1/2 cup chopped
  • Curry leaves-1 string
  • Mustard Seeds-1/4 tsp
  • Oil - 3 tsp
  • Fennel seeds-1/4 spoon (optional)
  • Salt to taste 


  1. Wash and soak the chana dal for half an hour. Chop the vegetable that you are using very finely.
  2. Heat the kadai with 1 tsp oil and temper the mustard seeds and curry leaves.
  3. Add the chopped vegetable with little salt and water. Let it cook covered on low heat till it is almost cooked. 
  4. Meantime drain the soaked chana dal. Grind it along with dried red chilies, fennel seeds and hing (asafoetida). Grind it without adding any extra water.

    Paruppu Usili

  5. In a different pan add the remaining oil and fry this chana paste on low heat for a good 20-25 minutes until it crumbles up. The dal mixture cooks well, gets dried up, crumbles up and gets partly roasted.
  6. I use the above method sometimes. Most often I prefer the traditional method wherein you pinch a small portion of the batter in the idli stand and steam it for 12-15 minutes. 

    Paruppu Usili

  7. Let it cool down a bit. When it is slightly warm, crumble it up with your fingers. You can also pulse it in the mixie/ blender tp get even crumbles.

    Paruppu Usili Paruppu Usili

  8. Now lets get back to the cooking vegetable. Once the vegetable is cooked soft and all the moisture has evaporated, add this lentil crumbles  to it. Stir fry the vegetable and the lentil crumble together for next 5 minutes. 
  9. Switch off. Yummy usili is ready.

Serving Suggestions


  • Make sure not to overcook the veggies. It should be cooked soft but not get mushy.
  • You can also use toor dal instead of channa dal or a combination of both.

Other Usili Types

Broccoli Paruppu Usili

Broccoli Paruppu Usili

Beetroot Paruppu Usili

Beetroot Paruppu Usili

Banana flower Usili

Banana flower Usili

More Recipes With Paruppu(Lentils)

Keerai Masiyal with Paruppu Keerai Masiyal with Paruppu Chicken And Vegetable Saute Kohlrabi Chana Dal Sabzi Broccoli Usili Broccoli Usili Cabbage Sabzi Cabbage Sabzi
See more...

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Comments (4)

Person Manasi   (March 26, 2015)
You can also prepare usli with lady's finger and snake gourd, it tastes awesome!
Person Dahlia (S.I.R. Author)   (April 1, 2015)
Ok. I'll surely try that soon.
Person joanna   (July 1, 2012)
how long sjouls dhal be soakes email is
Person Dahlia (S.I.R. Author)   (July 2, 2012)
half an hour.

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