Rajma Masala (Kidney Beans Curry)
Rajma is a delicious quintessential Punjabi dish. This is traditional north Indian cuisine generally paired up with Rice which is famously known as Rajma Chawal.
This is one of the comfort food at its best. This is made from rajma known as kidney beans. It comes in two varieties, i.e. Red kidney beans & white kidney beans. Red one is dark reddish brown in colour and another is light brown. I like the lighter beans more than the darker beans for this dish. BUt normally red kidney beans is preferred for Rajma.
Kidney beans are very nutritious but its skin contains toxins. This toxin is removed when we boil it to soft. So soaking the beans for 8 – 10 hours and cooking till soft is an integral part of nice curry. While boiling the beans remember to cook them really soft that it melts in mouth without a crunchy bite.
It might take 8 – 10 whistles sometime when you pressure cook it. If you feel it’s little bit crunchy then give 3 – 4 whistles more. You can use canned red beans as well.
These beans are healthy and nutritious. they are rich in protein and fibre and many vitamins and minerals. The red kidney beans are majorly used in Indian and mexican cuisine. Apart from traditional rajma curry, it can be added to lentils and salads. Read about the lentil and kidney beans dal makhani recipe here!
The curry is made by preparing spice mix using Indian spices and then boiled beans added to it and cooked to a thick consistent curry. It can be infused with many soups and gives a creamy texture.
Lets make our delicious rajma masala in punjabi style.
Rajma Masala (Kidney Beans Curry)
- Rajma/ kidney beans 1 1/2 cup
- Tomato- 3 fine paste (pureed)
- Onion – 2 fine paste
- Ginger garlic paste – 1 tbsp
- Refined oil – 2 – 3 tbsp
- Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
- Red Chilli Powder – ½ tsp
- Coriander Powder 1½tsp
- Turmeric Powder ¼ tsp
- Garam Masala – ¼ tsp
- Green Chilli – 2 – 3
- Salt as per taste
- Coriander leaves Finely chopped
- Soak rajma over-night in water for 8 hrs. After that wash the beans thoroughly and put in a pressure cooker with salt and turmeric powder.
- After that pressure cook the rajma for 7 - 8 whistles till it is soft and completely cooked. Over cook little more so that the rajma (beans) would melt in mouth without giving bite.
- Grind onion, garlic, ginger, green chillies into fine paste. Grind tomatoes to puree separately.
- Heat oil in a pan. You can add 1 tsp ghee or butter for taste. Add a pinch of cumin seeds and let it splutter. Add asafoetida (hing).
- Add 1/2 tbsp red chilli powder and 1/2 tsp turmeric powder just before adding onion paste. This is to give a red colour to the gravy.
- Then add onion paste and sauté till its cooked and leaves oil on the surface. Cook on low flame. Cook till the onion paste is thick but stir occasionally to avoid burning and sticking to the pan.
- Add rest spices i.e. 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tbsp red chilli powder, 2 - 3 tbsp coriander powder, 1 tsp cumin powder and sauté for 1 minute.
- I have soaked all the spices with 1/2 cup water for 5 minutes. Then to the onion paste directly I have added this mixture. Mix well and saute for 2 minutes.
- After masala cooked add tomato puree and sauté for 3-4 mins till it’s cooked completely and oil separates. Add 1/2 glass stock of kidney beans which you have got after boiling. This helps in keeping the flavor intact.
- Add boiled kidney beans to the gravy and mix well. Add 1/2 glass water. You can add boiled potatoes here.
- Let it simmer for 5 minutes till its gravy becomes thick. You can see oil floating on surface once the gravy is properly cooked.
- Simmer without lid for 10 minutes in low flame or till the desired consistency. Mash few kidney seeds with help of spoon to thicken rajma gravy.
- Turn off the gas. Add freshly chopped coriander leaves and cover the lid for 2 -3 minute so that it will soak all aromas. Rajma is now ready to be served with paratha, chapatti, rice etc.