Sem Ki Phalli Ka Salan

Indian broad beans (also sometimes referred to as Valor papdi or Hyacinth Beans ), or Sem Ki Phalli as they are called in Urdu language, (Chikkudu kaya in Telugu) are are a kind of green bean, very commonly sold in Indian markets and are available fresh daily at the ‘Rythu Bazar’ or the Farmers Market in India where you get to see an array of fresh fruits, spices, nuts, herbs and vegetables in huge piles being sold at reasonable prices. I do not usually get to see Indian vegetables and herbs at the Farmers market here, but when I do, I do not hesitate to get some, cook and enjoy eating them to the late morsel. Try searching for these beans at the Indian or Chinese grocery stores and food markets, you will find them definitely.

Indian broad beans – Sem ki phalli

The last week, I found some of these beans at the market and prepared this very comforting and simple stir fry which brings along many memories of my dear Ammi and my childhood. After washing and pat drying them, I always used to sit along with my mother to remove the hard fibrous srtings from the sides, split each bean into two, remove the seeds from inside into a small cup, and make a small pile of the prepared beans, chatting away endlessly. She used to then chop them up and when all were done, I was always so eager to taste this mouth wateringly delicious simple vegetable stir fry preperaed by her at the meal. Faint nostalgic memories like these tears my heart out with an intense desire to go back and live those moments again.

Sem Ki Phalli – Indian broad beans, with strings removed, split and chopped

These beans have hard fibrous strings which are preferably removed always while preparing them to be cooked. Some choose not to remove these strings as it provides fibre to the diet. The method to remove these strings is to simply tear the tip of the bean with hand and pull away the string from each side in one motion. These beans are delicious and nutritious. Do try them if you find these at the stores anytime.

Sem Ki Phalli Ka Salan – Sauteed Indian broad beans


  • Indian broad beans/Sem Ki Phalli – 500 gms
  • Canola Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Yellow Onion – 2, large, sliced thin
  • Red Chilli powder – 2 tsp
  • Water – 1/2 cup
  • Salt – 2 tsp or to taste
  • Garam Masala – 1 tbsp
  • Dry Roasted Coriander seed powder/Dhaniya powder – 1 tsp
  • Tomato (fresh) – 1, medium, chopped fine

Sem Ki Phalli Ka Salan – Sauteed Indian broad beans


  • In a large frying pan at medium heat, pour oil and as soon as it gets warm add the sliced onion and salt and let it cook covered for 5-8 minutes, stirring it occasionally in between.
  • Add the beans, red chilli powder and water. Close the lid and let it cook for about 20 minutes, or until the beans are soft, stirring it occassionally. You can add more water if required.
  • Add garam masala, coriander seed powder and tomato. Close the lid and let it cook for 10 more minutes until the water is absorbed. Serve warm.

Suggested Accompaniments: Serve warm with Rotis.


15 thoughts on “Sem Ki Phalli Ka Salan

  1. Loved your nostalgic post before the recipe – I have done the same to help my granny when I was a kid – we have a simple stir fry with avarakkai as we call it – makes an excellent accompaniment to sambar-rice or rasam-rice!

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