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Creamy yoghurt pinto beans

Serves 4 as a side dish
200 g | 7 oz dried pinto beans
1 teaspoon Malekhu masala
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon finely grated garlic
½ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 fresh red chilli
2 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
4 tablespoons plain yoghurt
Juice half a lime
Soak the beans overnight
Slice the chilli

Place of beans in a heavy pan cover with 1½ inches water, add the Malekhu masala, garlic, ginger and turmeric. Place the pan, lid on, on a hob on a high heat and bring them to the boil.  Boil for 10 to 15 minutes before reducing the heat and letting them simmer for 2 to 2½ hours checking them regularly, if the water is evaporating add a little more to prevent them from burning on the bottom of the pan. Check that the beans are very soft and creamy and that the gravy has thickened; if not, return to the heat for another 20 minutes.


Once the beans are soft, add the salt and stir them well, crushing some of the beans against the side of the pan to thicken the gravy. Heat a small frying pan until it's very hot and add the ghee/vegetable oil. Once the ghee/oil is shimmering but not smoking add the chilli slices and fry until they are dark red. Remove a few of the chilli slices for garnish then add in the whole Cumin seeds, frying until they are popping and darken in colour. Quickly pour them over the beans, they will sizzle and splutter.  Add 3 tablespoons of the yoghurt, stirring well and check for salt, adding more if needed. To serve garnish with the remaining tablespoon of yoghurt and sprinkle the reserved chilli slices on top.

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