Kidney beans and other beans such as pinto beans, navy beans and black beans are known scientifically as Phaseolus vulgaris. They are referred to as “common beans” probably owing to the fact that they all derived from a common bean ancestor that originated in Peru.
They spread throughout South and Central America as a result of migrating Indian traders who brought kidney beans with them from Peru. Beans were introduced into Europe in the 15th century by Spanish explorers returning from their voyages to the New World.
Subsequently, Spanish and Portuguese traders introduced kidney beans into Africa and Asia. As beans are a very inexpensive form of good protein, they have become popular in many cultures throughout the world. Today, the largest commercial producers of dried common beans are India, China, Indonesia, Brazil and the United States.
Kidney beans are an excellent source of molybdenum. They are a very good source of folate, dietary fiber and manganese. Kidney beans are a good source of protein, thiamin (vitamin B1), phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium, potassium:nutrient,90] and vitamin K.
Source : htto://www.whfoods.com
I usually make Rajma with kidney beans, but a raid into the pantry and I found out that I had none of those kidney shaped cute looking red colored beans. The weather was rainy and pitter patter. It called out loud to me.. Make some Rajma Chawal!
So I looked again, and I found them Pinto beans, hiding in a corner. I thought lets bring them on today. The result was not bad at all. It was meaty and nutty and just like Rajma with kidney beans.
I know I need to type away the recipe now:
Rajma Chawal – Pinto Beans with Rice
- 1- cup pinto beans
- 1 medium onion
- 2 large tomatoes - finely chopped.
- 3 tsp chili powder [I like them hot]
- 1 Tbs Dhania powder [coriander powder]
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- Some oil
- Some salt
- Some water
- 1/2 tsp garam masala [ i like to put a mix of cinnamon black cardamom and nutmeg in this]
- 3 Tbs kasturi methi
- 1/8 th cup chopped cilantro
- 2 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 2 green chillies
- 2 tsp ghee [clarified butter]
- Soak the beans overnight in tepid water or soak them for 2 hours in hot water.
- drain beans and cook them in a pressure cooker with 2 cups of water on medium heat
- The 3rd generation cookers [like futura] take about 12 minutes for the presoaked beans to cook. The regular whistling ones may take upto 20. Know your pressure cooker and act accordingly.
- The beans would be soft to touch but not mushy when done.
- Chop the onions fine .
- Heat some oil,in a different pan , add the cumin seeds, add the onions and do the usual drill.. .. stir fry the onions in oil till brown, add the ginger garlic paste and cook.
- Now Add the coriander powder, stir and cook.
- Add the tomatoes , lower heat, cover and cook. about 3- 5 minutes
- The tomatoes would be done, when you can see the oil separating .
- Soak the methi leaves in water, drain and add this to the tomato mix.
- let it cook for a min and then add the boiled beans along with the water in which it was boiled to this mix.
- Add half of the chopped cilantro now .. cover and cook until the spice marries the beans
- once you see the gravy thickening up, add the garam masala and cook some more.
- I like a medium consistency gravy for Rajma, as you can see from the picture.
- When you are ready to serve, heat the ghee in a pan, add the slit chillies and cook for 30 seconds. Sizzle the Rajma with this aromatic tadka and garnish with Cilantro.
- Eat it with Roti, Naan or the best.. plain white rice and lemony onions.