Bye Bye Blues, A Quick And Spicy Bean Dish Recipe

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I have a small confession to make. I love trick vegetables. You know what I'm talking about, the orange cauliflower, the red squash, the black garlic. So you can imagine my surprise and delight when the gang at Lunita Farm showed me a basket of dark purple green beans at the Saturday Farmers Market.
I'd never seen anything like them before and of course I had to have them. I whipped out my change purse, and impulse buyer that I am, plunked down my two bucks on the barrel head.
They looked so pretty that at first all I wanted to do was stare at them. Pretty purple beans! But I knew I had to cook them, and quickly, because beans are best fresh and after a day or so in the fridge you're playing dice with the bean universe.
It seemed no matter how hard I thought, I couldn't come up with a bean recipe worthy of these little gems. So I didn't use a green bean recipe. I had a Fava bean recipe from Michelin-starred Indian chef Atul Kochhar, author of the cookbook Indian Essence. I thought if this would work with Fava Beans why not with these quirky little not-green beans. I decided to give it a try. This is my adaptation.

Prep time:
Cook time:
Servings: 6-8


Cost per serving $0.10 view details
  • 1 lb of green or mixed green and not-green beans
  • 2 Tbs of coconut or other vegetable oil.
  • 1/2 tsp of nigella seed
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin seed
  • 2 thinly sliced green chilies
  • 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 tsp of turmeric
  • 2 tsp of sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp of tamarind pulp.
  • julienned strips of raw ginger


  1. Start out with 1 lb of green or mixed green and not-green beans.
  2. Cut them up into 1 inch pieces. The not-green beans have a heart of what else?! Set them aside.
  3. In a deep skillet or kadhai heat 2 Tbs of coconut or other vegetable oil. When the oil is hot toss in:
  4. 1/2 tsp of nigella seed
  5. 1/2 tsp of cumin seed
  6. When the seeds start to crackle add in:
  7. 2 thinly sliced green chilies
  8. 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and cut into thin strips
  9. Stir it all around. In about 5 minutes or so the chilies will have gotten soft.
  10. Put in the sliced green and not-green beans.
  11. Stir them around for a bit then add in:
  12. 1/2 tsp of turmeric
  13. 2 tsp of sugar
  14. Salt to taste
  15. Keep stirring them, turn the heat down a bit and let them cook until they're nice and al dente, about 10 minutes or so, and finally toss in:
  16. 1 tsp of tamarind pulp. *Note: ( For convience sake I used pre-soaked tamarind pulp which is liquid, if you are using tamarind dried in block form, you will need 2 Tbs worth of tamarind pulp soaked in 6 Tbs of warm water.)
  17. Give it a final stir and scatter some julienned strips of raw ginger over the top. You're good to go.
  18. These beans were amazing, sweet, pleasantly hot with a kick of ginger and ready to go in about 30 minutes. I probably could have even had them on the plate faster had I not been totally mesmerized by their beany beauty.
  19. The only warning about these little beans, they don't keep their color. When cooked they become just ordinary green beans again, so if you want to show them off in their natural state either take a picture for your guests, or invite them over a few minutes earlier to help you cook!
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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 14g
Recipe makes 6 servings
Calories 16  
Calories from Fat 3 19%
Total Fat 0.38g 0%
Saturated Fat 0.27g 1%
Trans Fat 0.0g  
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 2mg 0%
Potassium 55mg 2%
Total Carbs 3.34g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0.3g 1%
Sugars 2.5g 2%
Protein 0.32g 1%


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