Rajma Chawal

I was about to make some Rajma (Kidney bean curry) when I came across a recipe on Rajma Chawal (Kidney Beans Rice). This is a North Indian recipe, and is for sure to be a vegetarian delight. It has a rich flavour and ofcourse a very appetizing aroma. So armed with my can of kidney beans, I set off to the kitchen to try this new recipe. This is a meal that is rich in iron and protein. I came across this recipe on line a while ago, and then I saw a post on chefinyou, and the pictures made me drool! So I had to try it … 🙂


  • Kidney Beans – 1 can drained and rinsed (if you are using the dried variety, use 1 cup and soak the beans over night)
  • Onion – 1 large chopped
  • Tomatoes – 3 chopped
  • Ginger – 1 inch peeled and grated
  • Green Chillies – 2 slit lengthwise
  • Fennel Seeds – 1 tsp
  • Coriander power – 1/2 tbsp
  • Cumin Powder – 1/2 tbsp
  • Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Cilantro and Onion slices for garnish

Spice bag – you will need a cheesecloth for it
Put this in a cheesecloth and wrap it tightly.

  • Cloves – 4
  • Cardamom – 3
  • Cinnamon Stick – 1 inch
  • Bay Leaf – 1
  • Black Pepper – 5

If you are using canned beans, place it in a sauce pot along with the spice bag, and fill it with water. Cover and cook for 15mins on medium-low heat. All I want to do is extract the flavour from the spice bag.
If you are using the dried beans, use a pressure cooker and it should take around 10mins.
When the beans are ready, remove the spice bag and don’t drain the water.

As you wait for your beans to be done, heat some oil in a skillet and saute the fennel seeds, ginger, green chillies and the onions. When it starts to become aromatic and soft, add the spice powder and saute for another minute. Next add the tomatoes, some water and the required amount of salt, and cook until the tomatoes are soft.

Add the kidney beans along with the water and stir gently. Season as required and add water depending on the consitency you like. Mush a few of the beans to thicken the gravy.

Garnish with some cilnatro and onions and serve with rice, chapathi or rotis.


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