Wholesome kidney bean soup

The kidney bean or red bean, known as rajma in India, gets its name because of its visual resemblance to a kidney. Red kidney bean was brought to the Indian subcontinent from Central Mexico and Guatemala. Being a popular dish, it is prepared on all important occasions.

Some of the best rajma varieties are said to be grown in Jammu. These are smaller in size than most rajma grown on the plains, and have a slightly sweetish taste. The combination of rajma and rice is a favourite with north Indians. Kidney beans are a good source of cholesterol-lowering fibre.

The beans' high fibre content prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal, making them a good dietary choice for those with diabetes, insulin resistance or hypoglycemia. Kidney beans are low in fat and loaded with nutrients, and we'd probably eat more of them if they weren't also loaded with flatulence-producing enzymes. They’re also an excellent source of folate, manganese, protein, thiamine (vitamin B1), phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium, and potassium.

People who consume pulses such as kidney beans or lentils at least three times a week reduce their risk of developing polyps — small growths in the lining of the bowel which can become cancerous — by a third, researchers say.

Now, for a recipe.

Mexican tomato and beans soup

Ingredients

Kidney beans: 75 gm

Garlic, chopped: 10 gm

Ginger: 10 gm

Green chilli: 5 gm

Cumin powder: 5 gm

Tomato: 20 gm

Peppers: 20 gm

Onion: 20 gm

Lemon zest: 1 lemon

Lemon juice: 5 ml

Olive oil: 4 tsp

Chilli flakes: 2 gm

Method: Clean the beans and soak them overnight in a large bowl. Boil the beans over a light flame with salt. Drain the beans and place them in a large pot filled with water. Bring to a boil and cook for one hour until the beans are tender. Heat oil in a saucepan, add chilli, ginger, garlic, diced tomato, onion and peppers, and stir for two minutes. Add beans puree and vegetable stock and cook for 15 minutes. Finish with jeera powder and lemon juice. Garnish with coriander.

Executive Sous Chef

Taj Club House