Tried & Tasted: Usal/ Misal

I saw this recipe on Nupur’s blog, One Hot Stove, many months ago. Ever since then, I’ve been on the hunt for matki or moth beans. It’s really hard to find here in Chennai! And then when Zlamushka announced that it was Nupur’s blog chosen for this month’s Tried and Tasted event, I decided to really up the ante on my search, so to speak.

I finally found the elusive beans, and was glad that I could finally make the Usal/ Misal. Usal is a huge favorite in the state of Maharashtra in India. Its a sort of soup-y dal made with lentils, peanuts and potatoes – sound good? Well, let me say it was Fabulous!

Misal is a variation on Usal – add some toppings like crunchies (crushed potato wafers, hot mixture), chopped onions, yogurt – and you’re good to go. And this tastes almost better than the Usal.

So here we go with the Misal/ Usal. I’m going to do it pictorially, because I followed Nupur’s recipe exactly.

First I made the Kolhapuri Chutney. This sounded complicated and I was a bit apprehensive, but when I got down to it, it was not so tough. The only thing I want to say here is please make sure that the onions are completely dry before grinding, otherwise the chutney will spoil easily.

First, roast the spices.

Grind the spices to a fine powder.

Mix in the chilli powder.


The chutney/ powder itself was good and I’m glad I made it at home. It’s available in most Indian grocery stores. Next came the Usal, which is pretty straightforward once you’ve made the above Kolhapuri Chutney. It tasted fantastic and really healthy too (I used sprouted matki beans). The addition of the peanuts was great and gave it a lot of crunch. Will definitely be making this very often.




And then the Misal. We made this the next day with the leftover Usal. I can’t believe I’ve never had this before – I made a resolution to try it at my favorite little “chaat” shop next time I’m there. It’s delicious!


Thanks Zlamushka for the event which spurred me into finding those beans and making this! And thanks Nupur for the fantastic recipes – it’s a family favorite now!

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48 Comments Add yours

  1. Happy cook says:

    The last pic looks so delicius.Yumm

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  2. Divya Vikram says:

    Must have tasted too good..I can imagine the aroma while roasting the spices

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  3. Siri says:

    Wow! now I HAVE to try this out! sounds delicious.. esp the last pic is droolworthy!Hugs,Siri

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  4. Bhags says:

    you made the kolhapuri chutney, thats a great feat….seriouslyI just want a pav to gobble down that usal down…hehehe

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  5. That looks soo yummy .. is matki beans the same thing that we add to sambhar at times. in kannada we call it alsande kaalu. i wonder if its the same thing.

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  6. ranji says:

    this recipe sounds good anu…i have only tried sprouted moong before ..need to try out other sprouted variations…good choice:)

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  7. Jamie says:

    That looks SO SO good. Wonderful job Arundathi!

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  8. beautifullllll …. heyy i have a small something for you in my blog.. come over and check it 🙂

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  9. TBC says:

    Your homemade chutney powder looks gorgeous! I can imagine how good the usal tasted.Nuur has so many gems on her blog!

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  10. Srivalli says:

    Nice step by step anu..looks great!

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  11. delhibelle says:

    Fabulous work!The Kolhapuri masala looks so GOOD!Your misal is nudging me to make it soon..

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  12. Ranjani says:

    Looks fantastic!

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  13. Madhavi says:

    Very tempting entry, looks delicious!!!

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  14. Arundathi says:

    Thanks, Happy cook!Divya – yup – it was just delicious!Siri – Thanks, babe! Do make it!Bhags – lol – yup it was definitely gobble-worthy!vegetable platter – hmm – we add toor dal to sambar and this isn’t it. but definitely available in most indian stores. ask for matki or moth.Jamie – Thanks, dear!Swati – Thanks, sweetie!TBC – Thanks – it tasted gorgeous too! Nupur definitely has some great recipes.Valli – thanks dear. Delhibelle – You’ve gotta make it – it was definitely worth the work.Ranjani – thanks babe.Madhavi – thank you.

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  15. Arundathi says:

    Thanks, Happy cook!Divya – yup – it was just delicious!Siri – Thanks, babe! Do make it!Bhags – lol – yup it was definitely gobble-worthy!vegetable platter – hmm – we add toor dal to sambar and this isn’t it. but definitely available in most indian stores. ask for matki or moth.Jamie – Thanks, dear!Swati – Thanks, sweetie!TBC – Thanks – it tasted gorgeous too! Nupur definitely has some great recipes.Valli – thanks dear. Delhibelle – You’ve gotta make it – it was definitely worth the work.Ranjani – thanks babe.Madhavi – thank you.

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  16. Miri says:

    Thats a nice plate of misal – miss the days in Mumbai when after a bout of shopping in BB Dadar, you could settle down with a steaming hot plate of Misal and have a great snack!

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  17. Arundathi says:

    We definitely don’t get it in Chennai – maybe they do have it, but I’ve never seen it – I’m glad I got to taste it! Thanks for stopping by…

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  18. Nupur says:

    Thank you for trying the recipe, dear Arundathi! You made it perfectly and I am glad you enjoyed the taste. If you ever have trouble finding these beans in the future, try the recipe with other sprouts (like moong/masoor) for a variation. This dish is much simpler to make when the masala is at hand. But you managed to do a fabulous job of making this authentic Maharashtrian dish!

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  19. Arundathi says:

    Nupur – thanks so much – your words mean a lot to me. The dish was absolutely superb and I’ve made it several times since – as you say, its much easier when you have the masala at hand. I’m so glad I found a store where I can find the matki – I wanted to make this authentic as possible.

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  20. Asha says:

    Love Misal, looks mouthwatering!:)

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  21. Arundathi says:

    thanks for stopping by, Asha.

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  22. zlamushka says:

    Hi Arundathi,Thanks so much for this entry, it looks so tempting, you know what? I think I am going to sprout some of these mung beans…

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  23. Arundathi says:

    You’re very welcome, Zlamushka. I hope you did make it – let me know how it turns out!

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