“The most simple things can bring the most happiness”
Isabella Scorupco

It’s true! And I love to keep things simple in the kitchen; ingredients that remind me of my mom’s cooking, recipes that are familiar, meals that bring the family together. But sometimes one gets tired of the over emphasis on simple. Creativity wants to be challenged.

Stir fried green beans are my family’s favourite side dish with roasts and lentils but at times good old favourites also need to be tweaked to keep the excitement going around the dinner table. Without taking a giant leap outside my comfort zone, this recipe creates a side dish which serves this purpose. A few simple and easily available ingredients take this recipe to a whole different level of deliciousness.

This stir fried green beans recipe is inspired by the South Indian style ‘beans poriyal’ and Sindhi ‘Guvaar bhaji’ which is a cluster beans dry curry. I make mine with less spices and reduced cooking time to keep the beans crunchy. From chopping the beans to serving it hot, the recipe takes no more than 20 minutes and gets done in one pan with very little oil. Don’t you just love it when simplicity and creativity walk hand in hand!

For a quicker and more flavourful dish, use tender and crisp French beans.


1/2 kg green beans/French beans
2 tablespoons olive or sunflower oil
2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoons red chilli flakes
3 tablespoons desiccated coconut
Salt to taste
Juice of one lemon

This Is What You Do:

Trim both ends of green beans and cut into 1/2 inch pieces.

Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and red chilli flakes. Sauté for a few seconds or till you can hear the seeds sing and splutter.

Add green beans, salt and a splash of water to get the cooking going. Sauté for another 5-6 minutes or till the beans are tender but still crunchy.

Add coconut, keep stirring till there is no liquid left and all the ingredients are combined well.

Remove from heat, squeeze a lemon and serve hot as a quick and delicious side with any vegetarian or non vegetarian main course.

Serves 4