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Rajma Masala (Indian style kidney beans)

Alright, I am finally posting an Indian recipe. This is one of two recipes that I use often. I love kidney beans and they're high in protein. This recipe is delicious and full of flavor (what Indian dish isn't full of flavor?)

Once you have the technique down is shouldn't take you long to whip up a batch of this. I use canned beans to speed up the process but I now have a pressure cooker so I will be trying this using dried beans soon.

  • 1 can of kidney beans
  • 2 T oil (canola, corn, vegetable, anything that can handle high heat)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, grated or minced
  • 1 inch of ginger, grated or minced
  • half medium tomato or 1/3 c. canned tomato
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 3/4 -1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 c. water

I forgot to take a picture of the first step but on medium-high heat (depending on stove and pans - mine hold a lot of heat so I have to turn it down quite a bit after a few minutes) pour 2 tablespoons of oil into a pan. Once that has warmed up put half a teaspoon of cumin seeds and a bay leaf into the oil. Let those sputter around and brown up before adding the chopped onion.

Once the onions are golden brown add in minced garlic and ginger, one tablespoon each.

Once the smell of fresh garlic and ginger is gone you can then add in the diced tomatoes (or canned crushed tomatoes) to the pan. Add salt at this point.

Once the tomatoes have cooked down and the oil starts to separate from the mixture, you will add the spices.

Having a spice dish like this makes it really easy to get it done fast instead of opening a bunch of different containers. A friend at work bought this for me after she showed me how to make samosas and I was admiring hers.

I still have my little jars on my stove because I think they're cute but I use the spice tray when cooking. I also have the cloves and kasuri methi in the jars that aren't in the spice tray.

To the tomatoes you will add tumeric, red chili powder, garam masala, and coriander powder. Mix well and let it cook for a few minutes. 

Next add two cups of water, stir, and put the lid on it. Rinse off the beans as this comes to a simmer.

I prefer mine a bit thicker but you can reduce it to the consistency you like. Let it simmer with the lid on for 4 minutes to get the beans nice and tender. Take the lid off and let it simmer until it's the consistency you're looking for. Give it a taste before it gets to the right consistency in case you need to add more spices or salt. Voila! You have a pan of delicious Indian kidney beans!

I have made this quite a few times and have gotten the stamp of approval from my boyfriend and his roommate, so that must mean I've done a good job haha. Also, if you have experience making Indian dishes I would appreciate any feedback you have for me! :)



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