Indian / Pakistani bhuna keema recipe with detailed illustrations. You can make this bhuna keema with lamb, beef, or mutton mince. This taste is absolutely rich because of the browning technique and then braising the minced curry to accentuate the flavors. I bet this is the best-fried keema recipe.
What is Keema?
Keema literally means to mince anything. In broader terms, keema means Indian Pakistani curried minced meat. The usual ingredients are ground meat of lamb, mutton or beef, fried onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic and Indian spices like cumin, turmeric, chilies, cinnamon, cardamom, clove, and pepper. Cilantro is almost always used to garnish.
What is bhuna Keema?
Bhuna means to fry on high flame so when mincemeat is fried with spices on high flame, the result is bhuna qeema/keema/kheema. It is the most common mince meat dish cooked in every Indian / Pakistani home. The flavor of bhuna beef, mutton, or lamb keema is distinct and stronger than regular keema curry.
The bhuna keema has high-fat content and low water content which makes it ideal for preservation. It is also great as picnic food; ideal for canning food on travel and stays good at room temperature for several hours.
What to eat with keema?
This is soul survival food that is very adaptive and can be added in pies, like make a base of this keema in shepherd’s pie. Or add this bhuna keema in mince lasagna, paratha rolls, sandwiches, samosa filling, Bohra lasanyo or aloo patties. Plus it is super easy and simple to cook.
What else can I add in Keema?
Tips to make best keema?
Best tasting bhuna keema is made with beef mince that has 20% fat. However, for the healthy options, you may take low fat, lamb leg mince. (That’s what I used.)
If you want best-tasting keema bursting with Indian flavors, use fresh spices. This means use freshly minced ginger, garlic, and chilies. Use home grounded fresh dry spices. For this, you can dry roast cumin and coriander in a pan on medium heat for a few seconds until it is fragrant. Then grind it into a fine powder. Store this roasted and grounded cumin and coriander powder on room temperature for up to 15 days and use it as needed. The fresher than better. Use this powder cumin and coriander powder to make keema and other Indian chicken curries.
Another trick is to fry the mince until you see a golden brown ting in qeema (browning) and oil separates profusely. This is like searing and is called bhuna ( bhun-na) in Urdu. Serve it with nan, chapati or roti, raita, and some fresh kachumber salad.
How to make bhuna Lamb/beef/ mutton keema recipe
Below is easy pictorial to make keema in 6 steps.
- Fry onions in little oil on medium-low flame until golden brown.
- When the onion is golden and crispy, add all spices on low flame. Stir well for few seconds. (Try to use fresh spices for best taste. See tips section above for more details.)
- Add tomatoes and salt, stir well, cover, and cook for 5 minutes until tomatoes and soft and you see some oil singing on the sides of the pan.
- Add mincemeat, stir well. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes.
- Add yogurt and lemon, butter, and fry (bhun-na) qeema on a medium-high flame, until oil separates.
- Garnish and serve.
Hungry for keema recipes? Check these here!
- Keema Matar
- Aloo keema
- Hari Mirch Keema
- Keema cutlets
- Chapli kabab
- Keema samosa
- Seekh kabab
- keema aloo patties
Keema Recipe, Bhuna (Beef, Lamb or Mutton)
- 500 gm ground meat / mince, beef / mutton / lamb
- ½ cup oil, see notes 1
- 2 cup sliced , (250 gram)
- 3 medium tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder, see notes 2
- 1 ½ tablespoon coriander powder, see notes 2
- ½ tablespoon red chilli flakes, less or skip to reduce heat
- 4 cloves
- 8-10 black pepper, or less
- ½ inch cinnamon stick
- 1 whole black cardamom
- 1 tablespoon minced green chili , or less
- ½ tablespoon minced garlic
- ½ tablespoon minced ginger
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ cup yogurt, whipped
- 2 tablespoon butter, optional
- 3-4 jalapeno peppers, thick slices
- 2 inch ginger, cut in julienne
- ¼ cup fresh coriander, chopped
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper powder, preferably freshly grounded
- In a wok or large pan fry the onions in hot oil for 10 minutes on medium heat until light golden. Stir occasionally in the beginning for even cooking then more frequently as onion slices start to separate as threads.
- Reduce heat and add whole and ground spices first, give it a stir then add ginger paste, green chili paste and garlic paste. Fry for few seconds.
- Then add chopped or pureed tomatoes and salt, mix well, and cover. Cook for 3-5 minutes until tomatoes are soft.
- Next, add mince meat, mix well and cover again. Cook for 12 minutes on medium heat.
- Add whipped yogurt, butter, and lemon juice and fry (bhunna) qeema on medium-high heat, until oil separates and you see a brownish tinge. (For gravy: At this stage you may keep it dry or add up to ¾ cup water and cook for another 15 minutes on low-heat for bhuna keema gravy.)
- Add pepper powder, sliced jalapeno, fresh coriander, and ginger slices for garnish.
- Oil: Bhuna means to fry and you need to add ½ cup to fry onion and have the best taste. However, you can skim a layer of oil from the top once keema is cooked to reduce oil. You can add less oil if ground meat already has high fat.)
- Corriander and cumin: Use roasted and grounded coriander for best taste. See the tips section above for how to do it from coriander seeds.)
- Use fresh spices like freshly minced ginger, garlic and green chillies for best taste. If in hurry you can substitute with ginger paste, garlic paste, green chilli paste.
- If making kheema for picnic or travel or canning, add more oil while cooking. You can always remove the extra layer of oil from the top after heating, the oil layer on top protects food from spoiling and increases shelf life.
- With some leftover keema you can make tasty Bohra Lasanyo breakfast
What else do you make with keema? Please share in comments, I would love to read.