Urmil Aunty’s Punjabi Lohbia

I learned this recipe by experimenting over the years — it’s similar to rajma.  When I was growing up in New Delhi, my mother used to make something similar.

A lot of people ask me for this recipe when they try it.  The key is to let the beans simmer for a while, if you have the time.  It is best served with rice.


  • 1 cup red chori beans
  • 7 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp haldi
  • 1 Tbs. ghee (butter)
  • Hing
  • 1/4 tsp red chile powder


  1. Clean red chori beans (pick out any stones and wash thoroughly). 
  2. Heat 7 cups water in the pressure cooker on high.  Add the beans.  Add the salt and haldi and cover pressure cooker.  Once the steam starts, let it cook for about 6 minutes  and turn off.  Wait until you can open the pressure cooker.
  3. Check hardness of beans — they should still be a little hard (so the lobia doesn’t get overcooked).  Put lid back on and let simmer on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  4. Add 2 tsp tamarind and let simmer on low heat for another 10-15 minutes (and longer if you have time). 
  5. Vagar: add ghee – when melted, add jeeru, hing, haldi, little red chile (can also add garlic and onions).  Add to beans.
  6. Enjoy on its own or with rice. 
This entry was posted in Beans, Indian, Punjabi and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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