Gokarakaya (Cluster Beans)Koora

Gokarakaya (Cluster Beans)Koora

The past few days I have been concentrating on making sure that my hand swelling decreases, but I have been unsuccessful. It looks like I have to wait for my next appointment to find out what exactly has been going on. Though the wrist brace has been helpful I cannot really wear it at all times. To help myself during the week, I pre-chopped most of the veggies I bought and stored them so that I don’t have to chop them before cooking. VJ has been very understanding and brought take out multiple times, but that still hasn’t helped my hand. I bought cluster beans a week ago and they were about to reach their expiration date (AKA about to be spoilt) so I decided to make them. I hate cooking any kind of beans in general, because the prep takes away a lot of time. The chopping, removing the stringy part, making sure there are no worms inside – the whole thing is just tiring, so I get it once every few weeks. But Arlo and VJ love beans – any kind of them so I make it for them.

Mom used to make this all the time and now I don’t understand how she could find the time and patience to chop them. I was a handful and so was my little sister, looking back I don’t know how she did. She would have had to wake up very early to make sure that my sister and I had our boxes full. To think that in the future I have to wake up by 6 so that Arlo has piping hot food in his box makes me scared if I would be able to or not. For now, I have been managing only giving lunch to VJ and he’s pretty okay with our arrangement now. I have only eaten another version of cluster beans at a friends house and haven’t eaten any other version before. This is pretty much the only version that I know. Pooh loves this and when I used to get it she would eat it up, and I would eat her box. We pretty much lived off each other’s boxes. I still miss those days now. When we meet each other I want us to meet with boxes of our favorite food for each other. So here’s the recipe.


Gokarakaya (Cluster Beans) – 500 grams

Curry Leaves – 5 or 6

Tamarind Paste – 2 tablespoons

Jaggery – 1 tablespoon

Water – 3/4 cup

Salt – As required

Chili Powder – 1 teaspoon

Oil – 3 tablespoons

Channa Dal – 2 tablespoons

Urad Dal – 2 tablespoons

Asafoetida – 1/4 teaspoon

Mustard Seeds – 1 teaspoon

Cumin Seeds – 1 teaspoon

How to Make

Step 1: Chop the beans into 1-inch pieces after washing them thoroughly.

Step 2: Heat a pan and once hot add the oil. To the oil add channa dal and urad dal, as the dals start to change color add the asafoetida and mustard seeds. Once the mustard seeds start spluttering add the cumin seeds and curry leaves.

Step 3: Once the curry leaves start to shrink, add the beans and give it a quick stir, add about 1/2 cup of water first, the tamarind paste and give it a quick stir. Put a lid and let the beans cook.

Step 4: Keep stirring the beans every 2 minutes to avoid burning at the bottom. Add the rest of the water, jaggery, turmeric, and salt. Mix it again and put the lid back.

Step 5: Once all the water has been absorbed by the beans, the beans become soft, but not too mushy (if the beans aren’t soft add some more water and let it cook for some more time). Now add the red chili powder, mix it, let it cook for two more minutes.

Step 6: Serve it with piping hot rice and lots of ghee.



  1. Cluster beans are a bit bitter and that’s why we add the jaggery. If you don’t have jaggery you can use sugar instead.
  2. You can add some more tamarind to make it tangier.
  3. You can add cilantro in the end for garnish.


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