usal recipe, how to make usal recipe | maharashtrian malvani usal recipe

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usal recipe

usal is a maharashtrian curried dish made with legumes/sprouted legumes or mixed sprouted legumes and is had with pav (bread), chapati or rice.

4.58 from 7 votes
total time:
60minutes

maharashtrian usal recipe with step by step photos – tasty usal recipe from the maharashtrian malvani cuisine.

usal recipe

being born and raised up in mumbai, i cannot forget the flavors and tastes of the maharashtrian cuisine. though i am fond of maharashtrian food like sabudana khichdi, puran poli, batata vada, sabudana vada, bharli vangi, panchamrut etc. usal and misal pav tops my list.

my favorite usal is the one which my mother makes. this usal is from the malvani cuisine and different in taste than the other maharashtrian usal varieties. there are many variations of usal in maharashtra and this recipe is one such variation. coconut is added in this recipe along with spices giving it a coastal taste and flavor.

usal can be made with sprouted beans or unsprouted beans or even lentils. generally in maharashtra, they make usal with sprouted moth or matki beans. however, you could use moong beans, black eyed beans (chawli), green peas (matar or vatana) and also black gram (kala chana). for this recipe i have used mixed sprouted beans. you could also add potatoes to this recipe. this is a regular usal recipe i prepare at home and one that is much liked.

you could sprout the beans on your own. making sprouts at home is much better and hygienic. for all those who are not sure about sprouting or do not know how to sprout beans, here’s two handy links for sprouting beans sprouting mixed beans and making mung or moong bean sprouts.

i made this usal as a main course with some jowar bhakris. you can also serve this usal when making misal pav.

if you are looking for more curry recipes then do check veg korma, veg kolhapurimatki amtitomato saar and paneer kolhapuri recipe.

maharashtrian malvani usal recipe card below:

usal recipe
4.58 from 7 votes
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usal recipe

usal is a maharashtrian curried dish made with legumes/sprouted legumes or mixed sprouted legumes and is had with pav (bread), chapati or rice.
course main course
cuisine maharashtrian
prep time 35 minutes
cook time 25 minutes
total time 1 hour
servings 4
author dassana amit

ingredients (1 cup = 250 ml)

for cooking sprouts:

  • 1.5 cups mixed legumes sprouts (legumes)
  • 1.25 cups water for cooking sprouts

for the usal masala:

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • ½ tablespoon fennel seeds (saunf)
  • ¼ cup onion, chopped
  • 4 to 5 medium garlic cloves (lahsun), chopped
  • ½ inch ginger (adrak), chopped
  • ½ cup desiccated coconut or ½ cup fresh coconut
  • ½ to ⅔ cup water for grinding the masala paste

for the usal:

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ¼ cup onion or 1 medium sized onion, chopped
  • cup chopped tomatoes or 1 medium sized tomato, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder (lal mirch powder)
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 teaspoon malvani masala or goda masala or ½ teaspoon garam masala (optional)
  • 1 cup of broth or stock got from boiling the sprouts or water
  • salt as required
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons coriander leaves for garnishing

how to make usal recipe

cooking mixed bean sprouts:

  1. sprout ½ cup of dried mixed beans a couple of days before to make the usal. you will need 1.5 cups of mixed bean sprouts. 

  2. pressure cook or steam the sprouted beans till they are cooked. if pressure cooking, then cook the mixed bean sprouts in 1.25 cups water. 

  3. when the bean sprouts are cooked and tender. keep the cooked mixed sprouts aside. 

making usal masala:

  1. on a tava or pan heat 1 tablespoon oil. add the chopped onion.

  2. fry the onions till they become translucent.

  3. add the fennel seeds and coriander seeds to the onions. fry till they become aromatic. 

  4. add chopped ginger and garlic and fry these too for 1 to 2 minutes.

  5. add the desiccated coconut.

  6. stir and mix it well with the rest of the mixture.

  7. fry the coconut till golden brown. but remember not to burn the coconut and to fry the masala on a low flame.

  8. let the masala mixture cool. then make a smooth paste of the masala ingredients in the grinder with ½ to ⅔ cup water.

making usal:

  1. in another pan, heat 2 tablespoon oil. add the chopped onions.

  2. saute the onions till they turn translucent.

  3. next add the chopped tomatoes.

  4. saute the tomatoes for 2 to 3 mins or till they soften.

  5. pour the ground masala paste. since we have already browned the paste, we have less work to do. just fry the paste for 1 to 2 minutes.

  6. add the turmeric powder, malvani masala and red chili powder.

  7. mix the above powders well with the coconut paste.

  8. add the boiled sprouts to the paste.

  9. add 1 cup broth or stock or add more, as per the consistency desired by you. you can also add water instead of broth or stock.

  10. add salt. lastly let the entire curry simmer for 12 to 15 minutes or till you see some oil floating on top. 

  11. last step is to add chopped coriander leaves. 

  12. serve maharashtrian usal with steamed rice or bhakri or pav or phulkas or pooris. you can also make misal pav with this malvani usal recipe.

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step by step maharashtrian malvani usal recipe:

cooking mixed bean sprouts:

1. for this recipe use 1.5 cup mixed bean sprouts to make the usal. you can also use store bought mixed sprouted beans for this usal recipe, then there is no need to sprout the beans at home. to sprout beans at home, rinse ½ cup of dried mixed beans and then soak and sprout them. you can check the method to make mixed bean sprouts here – sprouting mixed beans.

usal recipe
2. pressure cook or steam the sprouted beans with 1.25 cups of water till they are tender and softened. keep aside. if pressure cooking then cook for 3 to 4 whistles on medium flame.

usal recipe

making usal masala paste:

3. on a tava or pan heat 1 tablespoon oil. add 1 tablespoon coriander seeds (sabut dhaniya) and ½ tablespoon fennel seeds (saunf).

usal recipe

4. fry till their aroma starts to spread in your kitchen and they change color.

usal recipe

5. add ¼ cup chopped onions.

usal recipe

6. fry till the onions become translucent.

usal recipe

7. then add ½ inch chopped ginger (adrak) and 4 to 5 chopped garlic cloves (lahsun).

usal recipe

8. fry them for 1 to 2 minutes on a low flame.

usal recipe

9. add ½ cup desiccated coconut (or ½ cup fresh coconut). you can also use half-half proportions of both fresh coconut and desiccated coconut.

usal recipe

10. stir and mix the coconut well with the rest of the mixture.

usal recipe

11. start sauteing the masala. remember to saute the masala on a low flame.

usal recipe

12. saute the coconut till it turns golden stirring continuously. do remember not to burn the coconut.

usal recipe
13. when the masala cools, add in the grinder jar. also add ½ to ⅔  cup water.

usal recipe

14. grind to a smooth paste.

usal recipe

making usal:

15. in another pan, heat 2 tablespoons oil. add ¼ cup chopped onions.

usal recipe

16. saute the onions till they change color and become translucent.

usal recipe

17. next add ⅓ cup chopped tomatoes.

usal recipe

18. saute the tomatoes for 2 to 3 minutes or till they soften.

usal recipe

19. now add the ground masala paste. since we have already browned the paste, we have less work to do. just fry the paste for 1 to 2 minutes.

usal recipe

20. add ½ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi), 1 teaspoon malvani masala (or goda masala) and ½ teaspoon red chili powder. if you do not have goda masala or malvani masala, then add ½ teaspoon garam masala powder. you can skip malvani masala or goda masala or garam masala if you do not have them.

usal recipe

21. mix the above powders well with the coconut paste.

usal recipe

22. add the boiled sprouts to the paste.

23. then add 1 cup of the broth or stock or add more, as per the consistency desired by you. you can also add water instead of broth or stock.

usal recipe

24. add salt as required.

usal recipe

25. lastly let the entire usal curry simmer for 12 to 15 minutes till the gravy thickens a bit. you will also see oil floating on top.

usal recipe

26. the usal is ready and done. last step is to add chopped coriander leaves.

usal recipe

27. serve usal hot with pav, chapati, poori or rice. you could also make misal pav with this usal.

usal recipe

dassana amit
Founder, Designer, Recipe Developer, Food Photographer ||

i started vegrecipesofindia.com in feb 2009. it is a pure vegetarian blog and shares recipes with step by step photos that will help you to make delicious and tasty vegetarian food easily.

i am passionate about cooking from childhood and learnt cooking from my elders. having a home science degree surely enhanced my cooking & baking skills which i now share as fool proof recipes on the blog. i am trained both in mainstream indian as well as international cuisines.


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44 comments/reviews

  1. Thank you so much for this recipe Dassana, a delicious way to have sprouts!

    • Welcome Tanusha

  2. Hi Dassana, I tried out your recipe last week and it turned out yummy. My husband and my aunt just loved it. Thank you for giving it in such detail that it was easy making it.

    • thankyou rema 🙂 and you are always welcome.

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