This is how I cook red kidney beans curry using Sri Lankan spices. Although I use Sri Lankan spices and the method to cook this red beans curry, I was inspired by tasting Rajma Masala. I am sure you have heard of Rajma Masala which is a popular Indian curry. It is delicious and even healthy too. A perfect protein source for vegetarians! Instead of following the Rajma Masala recipe, I thought it is good to cook this curry using Sri Lankan spices to make it easy to cook in a Sri Lankan kitchen. Instead of kidney beans, you can even use red cowpea (rathu kaupi) for this recipe if it is easily available.
I found another red beans recipe too. This red beans and rice recipe is easy to cook because it only requires few ingredients. The best thing is that you can even use canned red kidney beans. I will try the red beans and rice recipe soon as it is a perfect recipe for a Sri Lankan meal. Till that, here is how I cooked Red kidney beans curry.
Anyway, before sharing the red kidney beans curry recipe, I thought it is good to share some of the benefits of eating red beans.
Health Benefits of Kidney Beans
According to WebMD, you can improve your health by eating beans. But, you should consume at least a half cup of beans. This is because of the high fibre, iron, protein, and other minerals include in beans. Remember, beans are with less fat to make it a healthier choice. As WebMD shares, kidney beans have the ability to prevent colon cancer. According to research conducted, people who have consumed kidney beans regularly have shown less risk for cancer cell growth. The same article shares that kidney beans help control blood sugar and are even good as a meal for weight management. Kidney beans are rich in protein which is also a replacement for meats. Therefore, red kidney beans are a less cholesterol source where you can benefit from lowering cholesterol. However, this will benefit if you eat beans instead of meats that are high in cholesterol. In this way, red kidney beans are also beneficial in improving heart health.
Tips for cooking Red Kidney beans curry
Considering other types of beans, red kidney beans are firmer and will take more time to boil. But, even after boiling the beans for a long time, you will not feel them as soft beans. Instead, it will still remain a little firm. However, there are tips to make your beans soft.
- Remember to soak your beans at least 6-8 hours before cooking. Add a teaspoon of baking soda to your beans during the time you soak. This step will help to soften the beans.
- You can also use canned red beans for this curry. It will save you from preparation time. Even if you forget to soak your beans, you can cook this curry using canned beans.
- If you boil kidney beans in bulk, keep them in the freezer in small portions and you can use the freezer beans when you want to cook a curry. However, be sure to thaw it completely before you add it to a curry dish.
- Once the curry is cooked, take some beans out (around a tablespoon). Mash these beans using a spoon and add them to the curry. It will make a thick gravy.
Well, above are some of the tips that are better known before cooking this Sri Lankan style red kidney beans curry. Finally, it is a protein-packed curry with thick gravy that suits rice and even some flatbreads such as Prata, chapati , and other Indian roti.
Red kidney beans curry recipe
Ingredients (for 3-4 servings)
1 cup red kidney beans
2 medium-sized tomatoes
1 big onion
2-3 green chillies
1 sprig of curry leaves
1-inch piece Rampe (Pandan leaf)
¼ tsp mustard seeds
¼ tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp raw curry powder
2 tbsp. oil to fry
1 tsp Tamarind juice
1 cup thick coconut milk
Salt as required
Step 1: Pre-Preparation
Before start cooking, wash and soak red kidney beans overnight or for about 6-8 hours.
Once red kidney beans are well soaked, you can start cooking this curry.
Step 2: Preparation
Wash soaked red kidney beans and drain the water completely.
Add enough water to cover the kidney beans and boil.
It will take at least 1 hour to boil soaked red kidney beans. Drain water.
Keep drained boiled red kidney beans aside.
Don’t throw the drained water, keep it aside too to use in the curry later.
Step 3: Preparation of other ingredients
Slice onion and Split green chillies lengthwise.
Cut the tomatoes into small pieces.
Step 3: Cooking red kidney beans curry
Heat about 1-2 tbsp oil in a frying pan.
When oil is hot add mustard seeds. Allow spluttering.
When mustard seeds start popping up, add onions.
Fry a few minutes until the onion starts emitting aroma.
At this stage, add curry leaves, rampe and green chillies. Mix well.
Then add turmeric powder, curry powder and chilli powder. Add tomatoes. Mix well.
Once the tomatoes are well cooked and the mix is like a paste, add boiled kidney beans and mix.
Cover and cook for few minutes until kidney beans are well combined with the spices paste.
Then add the kidney beans boiled water just to cover the red kidney beans.
If not enough boiled water, you can add plain water as well.
Add salt as per taste. Add tamarind juice too.
Simmer for around 30 minutes in low flame.
Finally, add coconut milk. Adjust salt if necessary.
Allow to simmer the curry. Same time, using a spoon, mash some of the kidney beans and this step will help to thicken the curry.
Simmer for around 10 minutes.
Mix well and a delicious and healthy red kidney beans curry is ready to serve.
Serve with plain rice or with roti or bread.
I am sure you will cook this red kidney beans curry in your Sri Lankan kitchen. Adjust the quantities of the ingredients as per your taste. Be sure to let me know if you cook this curry. 🙂
This looks delicious! Both my husband and I like beans. all your recipes look interesting. Thanks, Amelia,
Glad you found these recipes interesting.I hope you will try some.
Thanks for visiting and sharing this nice comment.
wow soo yumy i will try it once thank
Dear Amila, Thank you for the recipe. I was wondering how to cook the kidney beans for my monthly Dana to the temple. so your site came in handy. I pressure cooked the beans and kept it in the fridge to cook it in the morning. Thanks again. All the best!
Thanks Kumudini for sharing your experience. I am glad that this recipe helped you to cook kidney beans for Dana. Also thanks for highlighting about pressure cooing the beans.
Have a great day! 🙂