Kala’s Butter Beans and Mince Dry Curry

In Tamil Nadu we extend mince dishes with either dried beans or peas, or with vegetables. Butter beans, also known as double beans, are added either in dried form or as fresh beans when in season. I have used dried beans in this preparation because it is commonly available in all food stores.

Butter Beans and Mince Dry Curry - Kalas Kalai

Kala’s Butter Beans and Mince Dry Curry

My recipe is very different from typical Tamil preparations as it does not require grinding of coconut or spices and is very simple to cook. Since it is dry, it is well suited for a packed lunch.

Nutritive Value

Both the butter beans and the mince provide 20g of protein per 100g. This makes the preparation a high protein side dish.


  • 1 C Butter Beans (Lima/Double Beans)
  • ½ kg Mutton or Beef Mince

For the mince

  • ¼ tsp Pepper Corn
  • 2 T Onion, diced
  • 6 Cloves Garlic
  • ¼ tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt

For the masala

  • ¼ C Onion, diced
  • 3 cm piece Ginger, grated
  • 1 large Tomato, diced
  • 2 tsp Kashmiri Chilli Powder
  • 1 tsp Sombu Powder (Aniseed)
  • ½ tsp Cumin Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt, or to taste
  • 3 T Vegetable Oil
  • 3 T Coriander Leaves, diced
  • 2 sprigs Curry Leaves


  1. Soak the beans for 8 hours or overnight. Remove the skin.
  2. Pressure cook the mince with the ingredients listed under For the mince for 20 minutes.
  3. Cook the soaked butter beans in half cup of water or more. Set aside.
  4. Heat the oil in a non-stick kadai or wok.
  5. Add the onion and fry till it becomes translucent.
  6. Add the tomatoes and coriander leaves, and fry till the tomatoes are cooked.
  7. Add the masala powders (chilli, sombu, cumin) and ginger, and fry for a minute.
  8. Transfer the cooked mince with the stock to the masala. Blend well and bring to boil.
  9. Lower heat and cook till the mince is almost dry.
  10. Add the cooked beans and curry leaves. Adjust salt. Stir without breaking the beans.
  11. Cover and cook till the mixture is almost dry.
  12. Serve with chappatis or rice.


  1. Butter beans could be added uncooked to the dish when the mince is added to the masala. But the beans take a long time to cook. That is why I have suggested cooking the beans separately.
  2. The butter beans are cooked once the beans lose their opacity.
  3. The cooked beans will have some water left. Use that also when it is added to the mince.
  4. I prefer to use Kashmiri chilli powder for its mild flavour and rich appearance.

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