Do you also feel ground beef and pea curry has an amazingly satisfying feeling; it is convenient to cook, and it is also very forgiving when you use it in any recipe. The Keema Matar is the most common Indian mince and pea curry with its origin in India, and Pakistan.
Keema means mince of any meat usually (beef, mutton, lamb, or chicken). It is also spelled as qeema, kheema by some. Matar means green pea. So when cook mince and peas in Indian style tomato and onion gravy, it is called keema matar. In winters, when fresh pea is plenty, it is a must-have in non-veg Indian homes.
Tips to make Keema Matar
- Use 20% fat beef or mutton/lamb mince, as little fat is essential in mince curry. Avoid high-fat mince, as it can give a very annoying fat smell. However, the roasted spices that we are using in the curry are quite aromatic and can definitely cover a little mince smell. Check this article for more info on buying mince.
- Make sure your peas are fresh and not from cold storage. If peas are not in season, then boil peas separately until soft before adding to the gravy.
- Use roasted cumin and coriander for best taste, for this always keep a jar of pre-roasted and grounded spices to ease daily cooking. You can find details of roasting cumin and coriander in notes of the recipe card.
What to serve along?
Keema matar tastes great with all Indian flatbreads but I assume garlic naan is the best option. Don't keep the keema too dry. A light gravy as shown in the picture above is best as it allows the naan to get moist and doesn't give a dry bite. Plain basmati or zeera rice compliment keema matar very well. Usually, in Indian homes, rice and naan both are be served with keema matar. If you are looking for another side to serve along keema matar, any lentil curry would pair well, like this moong/masoor dal.
How to make Keema Matar?
A delicious keema begins with golden fried onion. (However, you can also you store-bought fried onions. In that case, fry the spices first and then add the crushed and fried onions.)
Make sure your onions are thinly sliced. Fry onions on medium heat with frequent stirring for evenly fried onions.
See the onions are just golden and not too dark or burnt.
Once onions are golden add the spices. Reduce heat to lowest while adding spices. Let spices sizzle for few seconds then mix in tomatoes.
Mix well, cover the pot and cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes until tomato water dries and you see some oil shining on sides of the pan.
You can also use chopped tomatoes in the recipe, I simply blend the tomatoes to get a raw tomato puree. (I find tomato puree give better texture than chopped tomatoes.)
Add the mince and yogurt. Mix well and cover the pot again. Cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.
Add the pea (matar) to the keema. Cover and let it cook another 7-10 minutes until peas are cooked. Adjust heat as needed.
It is always better to use pre-boiled peas as cold storage and non-seasonal pea can take very long to cook. I used frozen peas that quickly get tender. You can also add small cubes of potato in mince at this stage to make aloo matar keema.
My mince and peas are cooked, I'll cook this mince further on high heat for 1 minute with constant stirring to dissolve some of the onions.
If you like a little gravy in your keema add about ½ - ¾ cup water, Bring curry to boil and then simmer for 5 minutes. If you like dry keema matar then simply plate out and garnish with ginger, coriander and chillies.
Find more mince curries here!
- Bhunna Keema (braised mince, Indian style)
- Keema Aloo (mince and potato curry)
- Keema Hari Mirch
- Lagan Seekh (crustless mince pie)
- Kofta Curry (meatball curry in tomato sauce)
- Keema Khichri (Layered mince and lentil rice)
Keema Matar Recipe
- 450 gm mince beef / mutton
- ½ cup oil, or less
- 2 medium onions (250 gms), thinly sliced or ½ cup fried onions (see notes 1)
- 3 medium tomatoes, chopped or pureed (See note 2)
- 1 tablespoon whole cumin, dry roasted and grounded or ¾ tablespoon cumin powder (see notes 3)
- 1½ tablespoon coriander seeds, dry roasted and grounded or ¾ tablespoon corriander powder
- ½ tablespoon chilli flakes
- 4 cloves
- 8-10 black pepper
- ½ inch cinnamon stick
- 1 whole black cardamom
- 1 tablespoon green chili paste
- ½ tablespoon garlic paste
- ½ tablespoon ginger paste
- 1 teaspoon salt, more to taste
- ½ cup yogurt, whipped
- 1 cup peas, boiled or frozen
- 3-4 green chillies, less spicy type, thick slices
- 2 inch ginger, julienne
- ¼ cup fresh coriander, chopped
- 2 lemon wedges
- Wash mince meat and put in a strainer to drain excess water, set aside.
- Fry the onions in oil on medium heat until golden brown.
- Now, add all ingredient in spice list. Fry for few seconds.
- Add tomatoes and salt, mix well and cover. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Next, add mincemeat and yogurt. Mix well and cover the pot again. Cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.
- Mix in peas and cook for 7 minutes until mince and pea are cooked.
- If the curry is dry add half cup or more water to adjust the consistency of mince curry to personal preference. (Skip adding water if you like dry gravy.)
- Garnish with sliced chilies, fresh coriander, and ginger slices. Serve with lemon wedges.
- If using fried onions, heat oil and fry all the spices until it sizzles. Then add the crushed onions. Give it a stir and immediately add the tomatoes.
- You can use chopped tomatoes too but tomatoes pureed give smoother gravy.
- I highly recommend using roasted and grounded cumin and coriander seeds as it gives crisp flavor and aroma. To roast just add cumin and coriander in a pan and dry roast on medium heat. Keep stirring until the color of cumin and coriander has darkened. Remove from pan and cool. Then ground into a fine powder. You can make a large batch of these roasted spices and store for a month. Use roasted cumin and coriander it in all Indian curries instead of plain cumin and coriander. Taste is always enhanced.