Rajma always reminds me of our time in Goa when we ran the yoga retreat there, it was one of the dishes that the Indian cooks made regularly and it always surprised me that there was and Indian dish that I found so similar to Mexican chilli, more in thought than in actual taste.
We have since tried many recipes for this dish but this one wins hands down, again from Yamuna Devi. It uses paneer, which Adam makes himself, but feel free to buy it. Although ayurveda and yoga both recommend dairy, it’s something we limit for both health and ethical reasons, however is one of my favourite treats.
|Rajma with Paneer|
And say goodbye to this blue flower kind of bowl, it was found broken on the floor. We are waiting for Deco Tarifa to open in February after their vacation to buy some new display bowls.
Adapted from Lord Krishnas Cuisine, The Art of Indian Vegetarian Cooking by Yamnua Devi
Rajma (serves 4)
2 1/4 cups dried kidney beans
6 cups water
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp tumeric
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp ghee
2 1/2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/3 tsp ajwain seeds
2 – 3 tbsp finely shredded ginger
1/2 cup water
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp oil
6 oz paneer cut into 1/2 in cubes
4 medium ripe tomatoes, diced
1 tbsp ghee
1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves
- Soak the beans in water overnight. Drain, place in large saucepan, cover with 6 cups fresh water, bay leaf, tumeric, cayenne and ghee, cook for about 1 1/2 hours or until soft but not mushy.
- When the beans are done the liquid should be quite thick. Take 3/4 cup of the cooked beans and puree them, return to the pot. There should be about 1 1/2 cups of liquid in the beans, add water or cook and reduce until you have the desired amount.
- Combine the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds and ajwain seeds in an electric coffee mill and reduce them to a powder. Transfer to a bowl.
- Place the ginger root and 1/2 cup of water in a blender, cover and blend on high speed until the mixture is a smooth liquid. Pour it into the powdered spices and add the garam masala, tumeric, salt and lemon or lime juice. The mixture should have the consistency of thin cream. Add water if it is too thick.
- Heat the oil in a heavy bottom saucepan over moderate heat When it is hot, drop in the paneer and stir for 5 to 7 minutes, carefully turning the cubes with a spatula till they are browned on all sides. As the cubes brown, transfer them to a dish.
- Pour the spice paste into the oil and stir fry for 1-2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for about 8 minutes more or until the tomatoes are reduced to a paste and the oil separates from the mixture.
- Add the whole cooked beans, mashed beans and fried paneer cubes, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes. Before serving, stir in the ghee or butter and minced herb.
Delicious with chapati and banana chutney.