The good old Rajma is one of the most favourite dish in a North Indian household. Rajma curry is a red kidney bean curry that is a very popular dish in Northern India, especially in Punjab. Red kidney beans or rajma are cooked in warm spices, tomatoes and onions. The long hours of cooking imparts mesmerizing aroma and spell-binding flavour that you just cannot resist at one serving. Served hot along with plain rice or chapati.
Kidney bean or rajma is a must-have legume that is widely used in various traditional dishes in India and abroad. It takes its name from appearance and resemblance to colour of kidney beans. These nourishing legumes are procured from the herbaceous plant, scientifically termed Phaseolus vulgaris. Although native to Mexico and Central America, different varieties of these beans are extensively cultivated across the world, including in India.
It is my son Reyansh who gave this idea to make Spinach Based Rajma Curry. He generally loves tomato and onion based curries but not a spinach fan. Today when I told him that I am making his favorite Rajma curry he surprisingly asked me to add spinach in it. I was doubtful that he will not eat curry with spinach so, I made two curries – Tomato-Based Rajma Curry and Spinach Based Rajma Curry. Guess what? Reyansh likes Spinach Based Rajma Curry more. Happy Mommy 🙂
Tomato Based Rajma Curry is cooked in a tomato onion gravy enriched with Indian spices makes you ask for more. Rajma Masala is usually had with steaming hot rice along with lemony and spicy onion cucumber salad.
Spinach Based Rajma Curry is a north Indian delicious curry made with spinach and rajma. Rajma, or kidney beans, are a treasure trove of health benefits. It is an excellent source of dietary fibres, which help boost your digestive system and also keep your heart healthy. Spinach which is known as palak is a storehouse of iron. Together they make a delicious wholesome meal.
Rajma Curry ( Red Kidney Beans Curry) – Two Ways – Tomato Based Curry & Spinach Based Curry
Rajma ( soaked overnight ) – 2 cups
Spinach – 2 bunches
Chopped onion – 3
Chopped ginger – 2 inch
Chopped garlic – 6
Chopped green chilly- 2
Chopped Tomatoes – 2
Juice of one lemon
Oil – 4 tbsp
Butter – 2 cubes
Dry coriander leaves powder – 1 tbsp
Cumin – 1 tsp
Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder – 3 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Rajma masala- 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Whole Garam Masalas:
Cinnamon stick – 1 inch
Clove – 3
Black cardamom – 2
Bay leaf – 1
- Put soaked Rajma with 2 cups of water, a pinch of salt, whole garam masalas and turmeric in a pressure cooker. Mix them well and pressure cook for 3 whistles. Allow the steam to escape before opening the lid. Divide boiled rajma into two equal parts ( 1 cup each).
- Check to see the Rajmas are cooked. Take one between your fingers and if you press it, it should squish. Keep them aside.
- Remove stems from the spinach and wash thoroughly in running water. Blanch in salted boiling water for two minutes. Now transfer boiled spinach into ice-cold water to retain the green color. Squeeze out excess water and grind it into a smooth puree (Add lemon juice while grinding). Keep it aside.
- Heat 1 tbsp oil in a deep non-stick pan and add cumin seeds.
- Allow to the seeds to crackle. Then add chopped onions and saute on a medium flame until translucent. Now add ginger, garlic, green chili and cook for 5 minutes on the medium-low flame.
- Then add chopped tomato and cook until they’re soft. Now allow to masala to cool completely and then grind it into smooth paste.
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in a same deep non-stick pan. Add red chilli powder (low heat) and add pureed onion tomato mixture. Mix it well.
- Then add coriander powder, turmeric, rajma masala, salt, and cook until masala leaves oil on low heat.
- After masala is prepared take out 1/2 cup of prepared masala (for spinach gravy) and keep it aside.
Tomato Based Gravy :
- Take 1/4 cup (From 1 cup) of boiled rajmas on a plate. Gently mash them with a potato masher.
- Now add mashed boiled rajmas in a prepared masala and cook for 3 minutes on the medium-low heat.
- Now the remaining boiled rajma, one butter cube and mix them well. Close the lid and cook Rajma for 2-5 minutes on high heat.
- Tomato based Rajma curry is ready to serve. Serve with plain white rice.
Spinach Based Gravy :
- Heat 1 tbsp oil in a deep non-stick pan and add prepared onion tomato masala (1/2 cup).
- Now add puree spinach, little salt and boiled rajma. Cook on low flame for 5 minutes.
- Now add 1/2 cup water and cook on low flame for another 5 minutes. Do stir curry after every 1 to 2 minutes.
- Switch off the flame and add one cube of butter. Stir it once. Serve hot with plain rice or paratha or chapati.