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Rajma – Indian Style Kidney Beans


  • 2 cups red kidney beans soaked in 8 cups of water for 8 hours or in hot water for 2 hours
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 tbs cumin coriander powder or 2 Tbs coriander +1 Tbs cumin powder
  • 3 tsp kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp mango powder amchoor
  • 1 tsp pomegranate seed powder anardana powder
  • 3 cloves slightly pounded
  • 3 cups sliced onions about 400 gms
  • 1 ½ Cups chopped tomatoes seeds removed
  • 2 tsp garam masala kashmiri preferred
  • 2 tbs minced ginger
  • 2 tbs minced garlic
  • ¼ C cilantro
  • 2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 6 Tbs ghee non negotiable
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tej patta Indian bay leaf


  1. Rinse the soaked kidney beans and put them into a pressure cooker along with 6 cups of water and the cinnamon.
  2. Put on medium- high heat and let it come to a boil before closing the lid of the pressure cooker.
  3. When the water starts boiling, close the pressure cooker, reduce heat to medium low and pressure cook for about 12 minutes.
  4. After 12 minutes, allow the pressure to gradually come down on its own. Place a do not disturb sign on it ;) Once the pressure releases check if the beans are done. Perfectly cooked beans will hold their shape, but yield easily to pressure.
  5. Heat the ghee in a pan, when its hot add the cumin. Wait for it to crackle. Add in the bay leaf, cloves and then add in the onions and cook until the onions are browned.
  6. Add in the ginger garlic and cook until fragrant. Now, Add in the red chilli and the cumin coriander powder, stir to mix and add in the tomatoes.
  7. Reduce heat and cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring every now and then. When this mix oozes the ghee out, add in the rest of spices, salt and add the beans in along with the broth.
  8. Stir to mix, bring to a rolling boil, cover and cook for 15 minutes on medium low heat.
  9. The ghee separates once again and the consistency look like you see in the picture.
  10. Finish with the cilantro, mix it in.
  11. To serve them how my peeps in Jammu do, take some fluffy basmati, ladel the rajma on top and put some hot ghee on top. Add in a sliced onion and green chillies and understand what the big deal about Rajma really is.