Friday, 11 April 2014

Restaurant Style Creamy Rajma Masala

Rajma is probably one common dish, after chole, which almost every Indian, men and women alike, knows to cook. However simple it might seem, getting the perfect taste and texture is not always easy and many a times we end up in disasters. I know this because I have been through this when I was not so much into cooking and understanding the chemistry of the spices and ingredients that go into the making of a perfect dish. I hope those who find it difficult to nail the perfect Rajma Masala will find some respite in today's recipe!

2 cups red rajma soaked overnight (ensure that your beans are not lying in the pantry for too long. Else, you might not get the perfectly cooked rajma however long you might soak or pressure cook it. The tinted rajma cooks better than the red ones though)
1 big onion chopped
3-4 medium tomatoes, chopped (increase or decrease the quantity as per the sourness of the tomatoes as well as your preference of sourness in the gravy)
1 inch piece ginger, 3-4 cloves garlic, and 1-2 green chillies made into a paste
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp garam masala powder
1 tbsp crushed kasuri methi
1 tbsp fresh cream (adjust as per your liking of richness in the gravy)
Salt as per taste
1 tbsp oil plus 1 tsp butter

Wash the soaked beans and pressure cook with sufficient water until done.
Heat oil and splutter the cumin seeds. Add the chopped onions and fry till golden. Make sure not to burn the onions  which will impart a bitter taste to the gravy. Now add the ginger garlic paste and fry for 1-2 minutes followed by chopped tomatoes. Fry on a high to medium flame until the tomatoes soften. Add the dry spices except the kasuri methi and salt. Fry till oil starts separating. Now add the rajma with a slotted spoon and reserve the liquid. Add salt and mix the rajma and the spices mashing a few beans for a thicker gravy. Now add about 1-2 cups of the liquid or whatever liquid is remaining not exceeding 2 cups (no need to add extra water if you do not have the required water). We do not want a watery gravy. Now bring the gravy to a roaring boil and reduce the gravy to the consistency you desire, not too thin or too thick. Towards the end, add the kasuri methi and the cream. Give a good stir and remove from heat. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with steamed rice, roti, or naan.

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