Rajma Masala

Servings: 4 -5
Author: Maria Jose Martin
Print Recipe


  • 3/4 cup Rajma (red kidney beans)
  • 1.5 tbsp Chana dal (split chickpeas)
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 2 Black cardamom crushed (refer notes)
  • 3 Cloves
  • 2 med -big Onion chopped
  • 2.5 tsp Crushed ginger & garlic each
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 2.5 tsp Chilli powder
  • 2.5 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1/4 -1/2 tsp Cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp Garam masala
  • 1 big Tomato pureed
  • 1-2 tbsp Coriander leaves chopped
  • Salt
  • Oil


  • Soak Rajma and Chana dal overnight. Drain the water and rinse the dal, 2-3 times. Pressure cook rajma and chana dal with 3 cups of water and salt. After the first whistle on full flame, reduce the flame to lowest and cook for 12-15 mins. Switch off the gas. Keep the cooker closed till pressure drops (10-15 mins). Open the cooker and separate the rajma and the stock (cooking water).
  • Take 1/4 cup of cooked rajma and chana dal and mash it.
  • In the same cooker, heat oil. Add bay leaf, crushed cardamom and cloves. After a min, add chopped onions. When onion begins to brown, add crushed ginger & garlic. Cook for 2-3 mins. Add all masala powders, except garam masala. Fry the masala for 1-2 mins. Add 1-2 tbsp of stock, to bring together the masala. Add tomato puree and mix well. Cook for 3-4 mins, till the oil starts appearing.
  • Add cooked rajma and chana dal (including the mashed ones). Mix well. Add the stock and bring it to boil. Do a taste test and add more salt, if required. Pressure cook the curry for one more whistle on full flame. Keep it closed till the pressure drops. Open the cooker and add garam masala and chopped coriander leaves. Cook for 2-3 mins. remove from fire.
  • The curry tends to thicken as it rests. Adjust the consistency accordingly. Serve the curry with roti, plain rice, Ghee rice, Veg pulao


The authentic Punjabi version uses black cardamom. However, sometimes I make it with green cardamom too. If using green cardamom, use 3.
While reheating, add some water to loosen the curry.
It keeps well in the fridge for 2-3 days.