Whenever I see tender, raw gwar ki fali or cluster beans in a vegetable shop , I just buy them. Among all the varieties of beans, these are my favorite. At my parents house we had a lot of empty space to grow vegetables,and we never had a gardener. My parents and I used to do everything, right from preparing the soil for seeds till plucking out ready vegetables. Both of my sisters were not very interested in all this. If they were forced by my father to do something, then they could not escape.
It’s so wonderful to see those tiny saplings coming out of seeds🌿🌿 and watch them growing everyday and waiting anxiously for the flowers to bloom and then in cluster, beans will start growing gradually. When you pluck those fresh beans, you can feel the wonderful fragrance of freshness around your self. Amongst all vegetables, I like the beautiful flower of ladyfinger the most. If you don’t believe me, try to sow a few seeds of ladyfinger in a pot and you will surely agree with me!
My mother used to prepare gwar ki fali in two ways. One is the normal way of preparing sabzi with potatoes and the other way is by boiling them first and then prepare it like sabzi. The boiling method is slightly more time consuming, but I like it more than the normal version.
During the month of “saawan” there is a tradition in North India to keep a fast every Monday. My sister’s and I are not deeply religious people, but because everyone around us including my mother used to fast, so we also started just to be part of the tradition. In the evening, my mother would serve these cluster beans with boiling method, along with plain curd or raita and hot plain parathas. I still have that photogenic memory of having this meal along with my sisters in the evening, and whenever my mother used to give hot paratha to my youngest sister Neetu, she used to get very irritated, because she hates eating hot food , her choice is always warm food.
When we shifted to Bangalore few years back, it was very difficult to find tender and raw gwar ki fali. But now, I can get from my nearby vegetable shop. Try this boiling method once, I hope you will sure like it!!
Cluster beans (gwar ki fali)
Coriander powder (dhania powder)
Red chili powder( lal mirch powder)
Turmeric powder (haldi powder)
Mango powder (amchoor) /lemon juice (neebu ka ras)
Water to boil
Wash nicely gwar ki fali.
Boil fali in pressure cooker, don’t boil for long otherwise they will be messy. In one whistle they will be done. Can be boiled in open pan, but it takes a little longer time.
Once cooker cools down, transfer boiled beans into a sieve, so that all water will drain out.
Once beans are cooled, remove both the ends very carefully, because you will be getting long threads from both the ends. It gives an impression as if you are peeling beans from their corners.
Heat oil in a pan. I prefer mustard oil here also like I preferred for Colorful veggies(kids special). Crackle ajwain and turn the flame to sim. Add coriander powder, red chilli powder and turmeric powder and immediately add 2-3tbsp water.
Stir it and when water evaporates, add beans. Sprinkle salt and mix everything.
Keep the flame on sim and cover the pan.
Turn it upside down two to three times. Don’t add water. Let it cook for 15-20 minutes on sim flame so that beans can absorb all the flavours of spices. Once ready, sprinkle lemon juice or amchoor powder, mix well and serve it with paratha, roti or rice.