Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Beans With Something Extra! Plus A Giveaway!

I never was a big green bean fan growing up. Mainly because the beans I was usually served weren't green at all but rather grey and flabby, the 90 pound weaklings of beans. They didn't look like they were full of vitamins and raring to go to work on my system but rather as though they'd spent their short bean life couch-surfing and watching Jersey Shore. They were skanky. What wouldn't be after being boiled for nearly an hour so they'd be "done" by the time they reached the table.
 When I started cooking Indian food 20 years ago, a new world of beans opened up to me; different varieties of beans, different ways of preparing them, none of which involved cooking them for too long.
 This last Meatless Monday, I decided to try green beans pan-sauteed in a chickpea flour nest.
  The original recipe comes from Yamuna Devis' book The Vegetarian Table: India. This is my adaptation of this dish.
  Here's what I did:
 Wash and cut 1 and 1/2 lb of green beans into 1 inch pieces. Chinese long beans would be ideal for this but if you can't get them, (I couldn't) any type of good summer beans will do. Set them aside.

 In a bowl mix together:
 1/2 cup gram flour (chickpea flour)
 2 tsps of garam masala
 1 tsp of salt
 1/2 cup of water
 Whisk it into a thick batter and set it aside.

In a deep skillet or kadhai heat 2 Tbs of vegetable oil.
 When the oil is hot toss in:
1/2 tsp brown mustard seeds
 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
 When the mustard seeds start to pop, add in the green beans.
 Stir them around for a bit, then add in 1/2 cup of water.

 Turn down the heat, put a cover on the pan and  cook them for about 10 minutes or so till they are just tender.
 Take the lid off the pan and pour the chickpea batter around the outside of the beans in a ring.

 Let the batter firm up to a pancake-like texture.
Then drizzle 1 tbs of butter or ghee over the beans.
Sprinkle 3 Tbs of chopped fresh cilantro over the whole thing and gently stir everything together so that the batter forms crisp little pieces of chickpea goodness.

Add a bit of salt if you wish and serve it up.
 The contrast in textures and taste in this dish is great . I halved this recipe for the two of us when I made it the other day and I wish I hadn't, it was that good!
 About the Giveaway
  As I mentioned before, our 1st Blogiversary is approaching and the people at Early Morning Pottery have given me 2 of their wonderful ceramic Chicken Cookers, and 1 set of Game Hen Cookers to give away in celebration. The rules are simple:
 Rule 1
 On Your Blog:  Post about The Colors Of Indian Cooking and this contest on your blog
 On Twitter: Tweet about The Colors Of Indian Cooking. (Include @kathygori in your Tweet)
 On Facebook: Become a Fan of The Colors Of Indian Cooking Facebook Page here and talk about it on your Facebook status.
   Become a follower of The Colors Of Indian Cooking
  Follow @kathygori on Twitter
 Rule 2
  Leave a comment on this blog with a link to your activity.
  That's it.
 Winners will be chose at random on June 14th .
 Good luck!


  1. Kathy that dish looks fantastic! I've been cooking with chickpea flour and have been looking for some new uses for it. I should have known to look here first. :)

  2. Kathy

    What an original recipe. I have never used chickpea flour the way you did. Great idea and I will certainly try it out. I sometimes make a dough and roll it out like a roti, cut it into diamonds and add it to certain curries - like dall dhokri, mutter dhokri, guvar dhokri etc...I think Sanjana's blog (ko rasoi)has the recipe.

  3. Hey..I know what you mean when you say loveless bean. I love crunchy beans and I am with you when you say Indian food does not have to feature couch surfing ( :) :)) what you have here and will be delighted to try it out!!

  4. I'm excited for your upcoming anniversary! You know, green beans were one of the FEW greens I would eat as a veggie and this recipe is a sure winner!

  5. Kathy, glad that you put up this fantastic recipe of cooking beans in Indian cooking way. In fact, I love eating beans and Indian foods, but haven't tried to put them together.
    Thanks for your sharing.

  6. @my mans'belly,
    this is a great recipe and I love the little chickpea pancake crunchy bits. Hope you try it!

  7. @Christine,
    Thanks, there are a whole bunch of great Indian green bean recipes..I'll be posting more soon.

  8. mmm, great bean recipe! i only just started liking green beans as an adult, and this is a delicious recipe to add some spices to the mix.

    awesome giveaway! i am a follower on Twitter & tweeted the giveaway:

  9. I was just at the market the other day and spied some green beans. The chick pea flour might be a tad tricky, but it might work out, plus I made a batch of garam massala that is taunting me to use it!

    I am not following you on twitter. I was already a fan of your page on FB and subscribed to you site.

  10. crunchy chickpea bits! Never seen it, never woulda thought of it, but I love it. I'm getting green beans tomorrow.

  11. Love the idea of the chickpea batter - very different!

  12. I've never even heard of chickpea flour, this looks like a great recipe!

  13. This is an interesting dish. I'll have to try it sometime. I think the green beans will go well with the gram flour and I always have gram flour in the pantry. I use it as an egg substitute.

  14. Kathy, I love this recipe - so flavorful! chickpea flour is one of my favorite flours, but it's so under-rated and under-used. This is a fabulous and delicious way to use it and would make anyone a green bean addict!

  15. What rich flavors and colors! Great giveaway! I'm signing up on twitter right now!

  16. bet this sauce is a nice companion to the green beans - thanks

  17. This is genius! What an innovative way to make a chickpea flour curry- And with green beans too... My favourite! :) You just made those beans a whole lot happier!

  18. Love the chickpea addition,great way to pep up the beans :D

  19. This looks like a terrific preparation of beans! Happy upcoming blogiversary!

  20. thank you for having a blog like this one. eversince my hubby and i moved here in malaysia some 3 years ago, we have been totally fascinated, enthralled and hooked on indian food and cooking. your site will be one of the additional sites which i check everyday for our indian food fare. thank you!

  21. Love the recipes, Kathy!

    Here's my entry...
    Followed you via @wfmscottsdale
    Tweeted w/ a link to the blog

    More than happy to promote such a lovely and informative blog!



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