Kidney Bean Curry (Rajma)

Kidney bean curry (Rajma) is quite a popular dish in Nepal. You can make it with dry or canned kidney beans. If you are using dry kidney beans, make sure to soak them for at least 8 hours and then boil or pressure cook them at high temperature for at least 10 mins. Kidney beans resemble the shape and color of kidney and contain a toxin called phytohaemagglutinin which can cause vomiting and diarrhea. These toxins are degraded by boiling so don’t skip this step! Also people with gout should limit their consumption of beans because beans are high in purines which are metabolized to uric acid and may promote the development or exacerbation of gout.


2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 cup chopped onion
2 medium cloves garlic (minced)
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 medium tomatoes (chopped)
1 teaspoon garam masala (you can find this in Indian/Asian food stores)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cans of red kidney beans (rinsed and drained)
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro

1. In a large dish, heat oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and fry until lightly browned and fragrant (~5 seconds).
2. Add onion, garlic, ginger, and turmeric and cook until the onion is soft, about 5 mins. Stir frequently!
3. Add tomatoes, bell pepper, garam masala, cayenne pepper, and salt, cook until the tomatoes and peppers are soft, about 5 mins.
4. Add kidney beans and one cup water, then bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pot, and cool, stirring from time to time, until the mixture thickens and a sauce forms, about 10 mins.
5. If you prefer a thinner sauce, add more water and adjust for salt. Garnish Rajma beans  with fresh chopped cilantro, and enjoy with rice.


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