Shell Bean Vegetable Soup



Shell Bean Vegetable Soup


Am I the only one feeling like the days are going by faster than ever?

I know we all say this from time to time but I have no idea how the past few months went by. Days, weeks and months are flying by… Seasons are changing. Sitting inside 4 walls most of the day living my routine stops me from experiencing this change. The only one thing, which keeps me in tune with the changing season, is food.


Shell Bean Vegetable Soup


Lots of fresh beans are slowly coming into the local markets. The pungent smelling, oily avarekaalu or Hyacinth Bean to plump and creamy butter beans /double beans are also making an appearance in our street carts.

During this season, I always like to have a stash of de-podded beans of different kinds to add to my curries and stir-fries. Most everyday dishes turn into seasonal specialty with the addition of these fresh beans of different kinds. The flavor of fresh beans right out of the pod can never be replaced with the dried variety.


Shell Bean Vegetable Soup


‘Hannu Hurulikai’ can be translated as ‘ripe fresh beans’, which is basically shell beans. They are a local favorite and are traditionally cooked into a spicy coconut based curries and added to vegetable pulavs. This time however I was in a mood for something simple like a soup. I hadn’t made soup in a long time. There weren’t too many kinds of vegetables in the refrigerator but I knew that these beans could make them special.


Shell Bean Vegetable Soup


This is a very basic simple soup recipe here. You can easily replace all the vegetables with whatever you have on hand. Adding fresh beans makes the soup a little thicker and adds a lot of flavor too. I love biting into creamy beans in-between the crunchy vegetables. Beans also make the soup a lot more filling, perfect as a light meal on a rainy cold Bangalore evening.


Shell Bean Vegetable Soup



  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • ½ cup of roughly chopped tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh shell beans
  • ½ cup finely chopped potatoes
  • ½ cup chopped green beans
  • ½ cup chopped carrots
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Mixed Italian herbs
  • chili flakes (optional)


I made my soup in a pressure cooker because it makes the whole process much faster but you can use any thick-bottomed pot instead too.

Heat the oil and add the bay leaves and garlic. When then garlic is golden, add the chopped tomatoes. Fry for a few minutes till the tomatoes are cooked. Add the fresh shell beans, potatoes and mix everything. Add 2 cups of water and cover and cook. If you are using a pressure cooker, you can close the cooker and cook it for 1 whistle.

When the beans are soft, add the carrots and beans. Add 1-2 cups more water if required and continue to cook. I like to leave these vegetables slightly crunchy so that they retain their colour and shape. Season the soup with salt and herbs.  You can spice it up with some chili flakes if you like.

Serve hot with some crusty bread.

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