Nepali Mushroom Tarkari dish

Main ingredient: mushroom, although it has a number of secondary and tertiary ingredients (learn more about these in the Ingredients section).  Mushrooms are low in fat, calories, and cholesterol: they are rich in antioxidants such as selenium (which reduce inflammation, chronic diseases, and counteract damage to cells) and many vitamins (especially B vitamins) and minerals, such as folates, magnesium, copper, potassium and zinc.

Taste description & background:

I learned how to make this dish initially when I came to Kathmandu, through eating it at a friend’s social gathering, and then getting more practiced with it and being able to experiment and refine quantities, and including the addition of French beans when I moved to the UK.  It is a very tasty dish which can serve as an alternative to classical aloo tarkari served with bhat, or as a side dish with the latter. The seasoned mushrooms with their mildly smoky flavour, combined with the sweet peppers and succulent French beans make it a really popular dish with both Nepali and British friends. 

Quantity: Serves four people for one occasion.

Preparation & cooking time: to prepare and cook takes about 15 minutes, 10 minutes for preparing, and 5 for cooking.

Utensils needed:

  • Frying pan
  • Chopping board


  • ½ a kilo of mushrooms (button or other types)
  • 2 -3 chopped medium sized tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of oil (vegetable, extra virgin olive oil, or oil of your choice)
  • A large red sweet pepper (can be green or yellow, but red is ideal for visual presentation)
  • 1/8th to ¼ of a kilo of French green beans
  • A large brown/cooking onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2-3 finely sliced green chilies
  • A tablespoon of coriander (powder)
  • A tablespoon of cumin powder
  • A tablespoon of cumin seeds
  • A teaspoon of chili powder
  • 1/2 a tablespoon of turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp of Szechuan red chili (optional)
  • Salt – to taste


Wash the mushrooms and chop them into large pieces, then heat oil in frying pan, and incorporate seasonings, finely sliced green chilies, and the chopped onions; fry for ½ a minute to a minute, making the onion light brown. 

Prepare the sweet red peppers, by washing, cleaning out the centre and slicing the skin in long strips. After this add the mushroom pieces, combining well and place on high heat for about 2 minutes to prevent too much water from the mushrooms coming into the mix (but don’t overcook the mushrooms). 

To conclude, add the chopped tomatoes, red sweet chili slices, and French/green beans, season with salt, and incorporate coriander, turmeric, cumin, and chili powder. Fry all together for another couple of minutes, and the dish is ready.


None really needed, as this can when provided as a side dish can be an alternative to achar.

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