Third time lucky

Mallika Basu - Third time lucky

Posted 10th January 2007

rajmah.jpgMuch as I’d love to pretend that I effortlessly churn out recipe after recipe in my cool-as-ice monochrome kitchen, the truth is somewhat different.

Every now and again, my patience is severely tested with recipes that won’t, for the love of food or money, work! Rajmah was one of them.

I had to make it three times before it came out the way I wanted – too much tomato the first time and too much onion the second. This could have been a real deterrent to future attempts. But what’s a bit of extra tomato or onion when you love eating curry?

I was fixated on Rajmah because of Mangs. In the early days of my blog, Mangs took to trying out virtually every vegetarian recipe I posted despite being a self proclaimed cooking hater. She’s been fairly quiet lately so I hope she hasn’t lost interest.

In a bid to revive her interest, I am responding to her request for a recipe for Rajmah, a wholesome red kidney bean curry that is hugely popular in North India.

Perhaps she’s just away and I am overreacting? The effort would still be worth it, though. I think…

In my recipe, I use canned kidney beans because cooking them from scratch is not quick and . The dark black colour when cooking it from dry beans be missing, but you will get to see your favourite reality TV programme so what the heck.

This recipe serves 3. You can use as much water or as little water as you like to get the consistency you prefer:

240gm tin kidney beans (drained weight)
Half an onion, chopped fine
1 large tomato, roughly chopped
2″ ginger
4 garlic cloves
2 tsp coriander powder
2 tsp cummin powder
Half tsp black pepper
Half tsp chilli powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
Half tsp garam masala
Whole spices: 1 bay leaf, 4 cardamoms, 4 cloves, 1″ cinnamon
1 tbsp sunflower oil
Water, as needed
Salt to taste

Mince the ginger and garlic in a food processor. Heat the oil and add the whole spices. When they sizzle up, add the onion, ginger and garlic and fry until golden brown.

Add all the dry powdered spices, apart from the garam masala powder. Fry for five minutes and add the chopped tomato.

Fry this masala mixture until the pungent aroma of the spices goes. Then add water to cover, lower the ehat and simmer until you see oil coming out in little pores in the mixture.

Now, drain the tin of red kidney beans and add it to the masala. Stir, add water to cover and simmer until you can smell the beans in the mixure and the onions disintegrate.

To finish, mix in the garam masala and salt. Serve hot with anything you like.

Comments are closed.