Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Rajma Masala ~~Punjabi recipes

A popular North Indian vegetarian curry, a nutritious and filling dish made from the humble basic ingredients. Rajma masala served with a pot of steamed rice is a super-comforting food and a hearty vegetarian meal.

Red Kidney beans also called as Rajma is one of the world's healthiest foods and is filled with amazing health benefits. These red kidney beans are extremely tasty and because they absorb the flavors of seasonings and spices, they make a great main ingredient in simmered/slow cooked dishes. When you see the list of benefits waiting for you from this simple beans, you will make sure to include in your regular diet. To list a few health benefits:

  • Packed with fiber: A 100 grams of kidney beans contains 45.3% of fiber making it a fiber star. Hence it improves the metabolism, prevent digestive problems and helps detoxify the body.
  • Lowers the risk of heart attack: Kidney beans are rich in folic acid and also low in fat. Folic acid or Folate helps reduce cholesterol levels and protects your heart.
  • Prevents Cancer: Kidney beans are loaded with anti-oxidants. This helps to reduce free radicals in the body. Kidney beans also contain Vitamin K which is known to reduce the risks of cancer.
  • Brain function: Vitamin K in kidney beans is beneficial in improving the brain function. Kidney beans also contain Thiamine which aids in healthy nervous functioning.
  • Reduces Blood-sugar level: Kidney beans have soluble fiber that can prevent blood sugar levels from going high after heavy meals. It is also a good source of protein which helps in reducing blood sugar levels.
  • Increases Bone strength: The high content of manganese and calcium in Kidney beans aids in developing stronger bones. 
  • Healthy skin: Kidney beans contain considerable amount of flavanoids which act as an anti-wrinkle. The antioxidants present in kidney beans have anti-aging properties and keeps the skin healthy and young.
  • Weight loss benefits: Red kidney beans is rich in Fiber, Protein, complex carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. This promotes the low storage of fat and decrease insulin levels helpsing to maintain a healthy weight. 
Phew!! #:-S that was a huge list!! I did not even include so many other benefits of kidney beans on your hair, nails. Well, these are good enough number of reasons to start off with adding kidney beans in your everyday food. After searching for more than a month, I found these precious Red beans in an Arabic shop and I cannot describe how happy I was! I had found the light specked kidney beans here before but they are not as good as Rajma for me. I had missed these beauties for sometime and now I have it on my diet at least thrice a week. I make stew, curry, parathas, Biriyani, Dips, chutney, raita and what not. Of all these, the curry which is Rajma masala is favorite for both my husband and I. 

I have tried my best to replicate the Rajma masalas that I have tried in some restaurants in Bangalore. You can make any modification to the recipe as you wish. Hope you enjoy this dish as much as I do.

Nutritional Information  (Approx) (per serving)
Energy  120 Calories
Fat 5 %
Carbohydrates 6 %
Dietary Fiber 3 %
Sodium 25 %
Vitamin A 0 %
Vitamin C 30 %
Calcium  6 %
Iron  10 %
Protein 5 Grams
Sugar 0 Grams

Red kidney beans 3/4 cup
Oil 1 teaspoon + 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds 1 teaspoon 
Cloves 2
Cinnamon a small stick
Cardamom 1
Onion chopped 1
Green chillies slit 2
Ginger garlic paste 1 teaspoon
Tomato chopped 1
Bay leaf 1
Salt to taste
Coriander powder 1/2 teaspoon
Turmeric powder 1/2 teaspoon
Chilli powder(optional) 1/2 teaspoon

  • Soak the kidney beans in water for at least 6 hours or overnight. Pressure cook them with 3 cups of water till soft.
  • Heat oil in a pan, add cumin seeds, cloves, cinnamon and cardamom. Fry for a minute.
  • Add chopped onion and green chillies. Once the onion looks translucent, add ginger garlic paste and fry.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and fry till the tomatoes are soft.
  • Let the mixture cool for a while. Grind the mixture to a smooth paste.
  • Heat oil in the same pan and add the bay leaf. 
  • Also add the ground paste and fry till the oil leaves the masala.
  • Add salt, coriander powder, turmeric powder and chilli powder and bring the mixture to boil.
  • Add the rajma along with cooked water and mix well.
  • Simmer the heat and cook for about 10 minutes and serve hot with steamed rice.

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