Beans sidedish(Beans upkari, Valasangi/alsande upkari, chitmitki/gawar upkari)

Here I am posting sidedishes prepared with 3 kind of beans. I clubbed them because all the three have the same procedure. But they have very different tastes because of the different kind of beans used. These are very tasty and can be mastered easily (recommended for newbies).

Most of my Kannada friends didn’t know this kind of sidedish. They usually fried beans instead of cooking them. I loved this procedure because, it retains the aroma of beans and gave a distinguishing taste to the sidedish. Following are the differnt types of beans I used and the pictures of the sidedishes(called as ‘upkari’ in konkani).

Green beans (we call them as beans in Konkani also) but some people call them as French beans or Farasbee (This name I got from Lakshmi’s comment and Vaishali’s post)

Beans upkari

Valasangi(Konkani) is also called as alsande, chawlichya shenga, yardlong beans or cow pea beans (Thanks Vaishali for the different names of this vegetable).

Valasangi upkari

Chitmitki(Konkani) is also called as mitkesaang or Gawar/Gaur or Cluster beans. These have a slight tinge of bitter taste to them. Unlike the other beans (which are usually cut using a knife), these are broken into pieces by hand to remove the threads (which are usually found along the sides of these beans).

Chitmitki upkari

Beans or valasangi or chitmitki 2 cups
Potato (cut into small squares) 1 cup
Mustard seeds 1/2 tea spn
Jaggery(optional) 1/2 tea spn
Green chillies 4-5
Curry leaves(optional) 4-5
Asafoetida a pinch
Oil 1/2 tea spn
Coconut(fresh/frozen)(optional) 1 tbl spn
Turmeric (optional) a pinch

As far as I know, turmeric is not added to this dish. But since it is good for health and usually does not affect the taste, I add a pinch whenever I remember.

Cook beans and potato in pressure cooker (this speeds up the cooking process).
Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When they start popping, add asafoetida, turmeric, curry leaves and green chilli slits. Fry for around 4-5 seconds and add the cooked beans-potatos. (alternatively, add the uncooked beans and potatoes at this step, add 1/2 cup of water, close the vessel and let it cook. If this method is used, the vegetables take a longer time to cook).
Add jaggery, salt and mix well. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Garnish with coconut and mix well.
Serve as a side dish with rice and any gravy or dal.

Serves : 3-4
Preparation time : 10-15mins

Note: If planning to cook rice, daal and vegetables at a time using the cooker vessels, keep the daal in the bottommost vessel, rice in the middle and vegetables in the top. Any other combination will leave daal or rice uncooked and vegetables mashed. I recommend to purchase the cooker vessels (3 vessels which fit into cooker, with one vessel slightly bigger than other two. This speeds up cooking).

26 thoughts on “Beans sidedish(Beans upkari, Valasangi/alsande upkari, chitmitki/gawar upkari)”

  1. Upkaris are my favorite…I make them with every vegetable possible.
    I think steam cooking is better for the veges though, they retain their flavor in my opinion.

  2. Hi Shilpa,

    I have another variation to alsande upkari. Its a typical Karwari recipe (my mom in laws recipe).
    Make seasoning of hing, mustard and turmeric, then
    add small minced onion. After it turns slightly pinkish add cut alsande & cook it by adding enough water. When done add karwari sambhar powder, chilli powder, a pinch of sugar & salt. Add chopped corriander for garnish. Tastes good


  3. I too make a lot of upkaris Ashwini. They taste great :). Thanks for stopping by.

    Suchita, that is a new recipe for me. Can you please clarify what a ‘Karwari sambar powder’ is? never heard of it.

    Lakshmi, Thanks for the name. I have never heard of word Farasbee in Konkani. I googled and got Vaishali’s post where she has mentioned this name. I will update the post.

  4. Shilpa,
    The best part of this post is the note in the end, in my opinion. It is so useful for beginners. As experienced cooks, we automatically put the Dal at the bottom and the rest on top, but a novice, I am sure, will have to be ‘told’ to do that. I would have never remembered to add it, had I been writing this post. 🙂

  5. Shilpa…where did u find alsande here? It’s been 2 years since I’ve had alsande upkari and my mouth waters everytime my mom mentions it.

  6. Hi Shilpa ……Lot of patience to click so many pictures and a detailed write up. I guess after the Janamashtami post, most of you posting’s have been long. Hats off to you for helping all the newbies. One
    question, i have never added curry leaves, is the taste different. I need to try this. Usually when i see mitkesaang, i buy in good quantities, cut and freeze them, as you might not see fresh onces for quite some time. Thanks for posting.

  7. Hi Shilpa,

    The karwari sambhar powder has the following ingredients : corriander seeds, red chillies, mustard, fenugreek seeds, peppercorns, brown chana , urad dal, green moong and turmeric. These are dry roasted and ground in a grinder.


  8. I already have some alu baji left over…so all I need to add issome boiled beans to it and give it a new look to make u’r upkari!!Today’s sidedish is done so easy!!Thanx dear!

  9. Thanks Vaishali. I had seen some people using the cooker vessels in different order. So thought of mentioning it. Hope somebody reads it and follows.

    Preeti, alsande is available in Chinese stores and in farmer’s market. Looks like it is a season. A lot of different variety of them are available now.

    Aruna, my aayi also does not use curry leaves. I add them for the aroma. (I have made it optional in the post now).

    Thanks Prema, MT.

    Thanks Suchita. I will try this powder. looks like it can be used for sambar also.

    Shynee..thats a great idea to use left over alu bhaji :).

  10. What a coincidence! I just made yardlong beans or chinese beans side dish yesterday! I have one delicious recipe too with french beans, may be next time…

    Idli, sambar looks good, Shilpa. But I will not be making idlis any time soon, you know why !! Ahhhhhhh………….. 😀

  11. Hi there…… I was searching a recipe for teesrio where i came across ur site and believe me…i was more than happy to find ur site. I am a north indian, staying in north india but born and brought up in Goa and absolutely love the konkani and karwari food and I am so glad I got all the recipes of my favorite dishes….. I tried ur beans upkari recipe and it was exactly the way I used to relish at my friend’s house…. Thanx a ton and even i passed this upkari to my north indian friends and they loved it and now I m promotiong ur site. Do keep up the gud work

  12. Asha, I am looking forward to read your recipe. Your idli experiment was great. Loved it.

    Thanks for your kind words Garima. Keep visiting…

  13. Hi

    I’m new to your website. i love your recepes. I’m from shimoga but my syster stays in mangalore. whenever i visit her she makes lot of konkani dishes. i used to love it. by visiting your site i miss my syster. thanks a lot.

  14. I noramlly do not steam the french beans and alsando, only steam or micro-wave the gavar beans.

    I make another version of alsando – finely chop it, then temper the oil with mustard and hing , add the alsando, salt, jaggery and sambar powder or amti masala and fry it for a few minutes to make it crisp. Just befrore taking off the fire, I add finely chopped onions, grated cocnut and dhaniya leaves. Do not fry or cook the onions for more than a miute or two, Should still remain a little kaccha. Try this….you will love it. You may omit the masala powders and still make it yummy !!

    Another vesion for French Beans is add urad dal and finely chopped ginger to your recipe. rest all the same. Again I do not steam the beans as I like it to be crunchy..

  15. Hello

    I tried this recipe out with guvar. It is very traditional. It came out very very well.
    Thanks for the recipe.

  16. Sowmya, you can make many dishes with beans. Please search “green beans” in search box above. We have a very good Indian store here. So I get everything from there. You can try in Chinese store near your place. They usually have alsande any many of our veggies.

  17. Pingback: Indian food, Andhra recipes and Global cuisine inspired cooking » All Recipes Shilpa Vegetables Vegetarian Recipes » Indian Food Trail - An essay on Konkani Cuisine - by Shilpa

  18. Hi Shilpa,

    I have recently moved to New Zealand after getting married, and had never entered a kitchen (except to eat :))… The idea of making my own meals was a little scary… and then I went and stumbled upon your site!! I have tried quite a few of your recipes… and it is helping cure a bit of the homesickness 🙂
    I tried this upkari today… and its turned out so delicious that I hope there is some left for my husband when he gets home 😉
    Thank you so much!!

  19. Shilpa
    My mother has a very simple way of cooking alsande upkari.
    Add oil in a pan,then add green chillies and mustard.After mustard starts popping add alsande chopped finely.Close the pan for a while.Cook until done with very little water.Too much of water spoils the taste.Then add salt and little jaggery and sprinle some coconut on top.Beleive me its absolutely relishing…

  20. Upkari is a wonderful Karwari Method of cooking. One can cook almost any vegitable using this method. Wonderful taste, good for health and no restriction on quantity.

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