Rajma (Red Bean Curry)


I always enjoy going to Punjabi events because rajma is inevitably served. It’s definitely an Indian comfort food, and so I’ve been meaning to cook it for some time. My friend Chandni gave her recipe and I consulted a few online and off I went! First times the charm for this one, just put the common elements together and it all came together!

I think my favorite thing about this recipe is the fact that its super easy to cook, or maybe that it’s cheap….or maybe that it’s tasty…hmm, I have several favorite things about it!

Special tools: a food processor (blender, or mortar and pestle) and a pressure cooker.


Soak overnight
2 cups, Dry Red Kidney Beans
1 tsp asafoetida (hing)

Keep the beans covered under water. Don’t drain.

Grind (Purée)
1 red onion
5 garlic pods
2 green chilies (serranos)
1 tsp ginger powder (1tbsp ground or 2″ fresh ginger)

In a pressure cooker heat (lid off)
2 tbsp ghee (clarified butter, or oil)
1 tsp cumin seeds

when the seeds brown, add onion purée and add
2.5 tsp salt
1 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp methi powder
1/4 tsp cloves

stir frequently, and while it reduces moisture, grind (purée)
3 tomatoes (1 can diced tomatoes)

When the onion mixture reduces, add tomato purée. Cook about 10 minutes or until the water is mostly gone.

Add kidney beans with the water they were soaking in, close pressure cooker.

Cook for 5-6 whistles (about 25-30 minutes) on medium heat.

Serve with plain white rice. If you’ve ever had red beans and rice, it’s similar to that. Yum!


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