Beans Aajadina / Beans Sukka / Beans stir fried with coconut
French beans are one of my favourite vegetables. It cooks fast and works in any form and cuisine. Be it a quick stir fry with salt and pepper or garam masala or in sambar, beans are made a number of ways in India. One of my go to recipes is a sukka. We are more familiar with chicken, mutton and seafood sukka dishes at restaurants. But back home, sukka or as it’s called in Tulu “aajadina”, is a common way of making a side dish with vegetables. Beans, ivy gourd, chickpeas and many other legumes and vegetables are made this style.
Aajadina loosely translates to “drying it out”. Basically, the vegetable is sauteed in a tempering of mustard, cumin seeds, urad dal and curry leaves with just a splash of water and salt. Once almost cooked, a mixture of fresh coconut with spices and turmeric is stirred in. It tastes fresh, fragrant and, unlike other dull vegetable side dishes.
French beans – 2 cups chopped
Ghee or coconut oil – 2 tsp
Urad dal – 1 tsp
Dried red chillies – 2 whole
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves – 1 sprig
For the coconut mixture:
Freshly grated coconut – 1/2 – 3/4 cup
Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
Ginger – 1/2 inch piece
Garlic – 3 cloves
Turmeric – 1/2 – 3/4 tsp
Dried red chilli – 1
Salt to taste
Heat the ghee or coconut oil in a pan and once it’s hot add the mustard seeds. Let them splutter.
Now add the urad dal, cumin and red chilli. Once the dal turns light brown add the curry leaves. Let them crackle.
Tip the chopped beans in and give it a good stir. Add a splash of water and a little salt. Cover and cook for 5 mins.
In the meanwhile, dry roast all the ingredients for the spice mix except the coconut, ginger and garlic.
Put them in your mixer jar along with the ginger and garlic, and grind till you have a coarse mixture. Now add the coconut and turmeric, and pulse it a few times till they come together but don’t over do it and turn it into a paste. You want it to be a rough coconut mixture.
Once the beans are done, stir in the coconut mixture and let it heat through. Turn off the flame and serve with rice and dal or even with just roti.