Keema curry (keema matar) is a delicious Indian/Pakistani ground meat and pea curry. Easy to make, and with plenty of flavor, it’s a great meal for any night of the week. It’s also perfect for meal prep.
Coming from the UK, Indian food was part and parcel of our food culture. In this case I say Indian to mean the whole subcontinent, as in many areas the majority were from Bangladesh or Pakistan. In fact Indian food has become so common, some Indian dishes are these days considered British classics. Which is not necessarily so far from the truth, as some were indeed created by immigrants in the UK rather than being truly traditional dishes.
Where does keema curry originate?
This keema matar, however, while being a staple on restaurant menus in the UK and elsewhere, does indeed have Indian roots, apparently going back to the Mughul empire courts. “keema” means ground meat and “matar” are peas. If you think of keema curry as having potatoes, that is indeed another common variation, keema aloo.
How it’s made
You can make this dish with pretty much any ground meat, with beef or lamb/mutton the most common. Here I have made it with ground beef which works really well. It’s an easy dish to make and easy to spice up and down to taste. All you do is sizzle the whole spices to get the flavors going, soften the onion then add in the spices. Brown the meat, add the tomato and peas then after a short cook it’s ready to serve.
Keema curry is a great dish to make on any night of the week since it’s both quick and easy, but it’s also great for meal prepping. Just make a batch then have some with naan or other Indian breads, rice, or other Indian dishes on the side such as saag aloo. Some brinjal pickle (eggplant relish) would go well too. However you enjoy it, it’s an easy way to ground meat that bit more interesting without too much work.
Keema curry is an easy ground meat and pea curry that's quick, easy and tasty.
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cardamon pods
- 1 onion (med-large, 1 1/2 cups small dice)
- 1 tbsp garlic finely diced
- 1 tbsp ginger finely diced
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp chili powder or more to taste
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp ground cloves
- 1 lb ground beef 450g beef mince (can also use other ground meats eg turkey, lamb)
- 1 tomato finely diced
- 1 cup frozen peas 140g
- 1/4 cup water 60ml
Warm the oil in a medium skillet/frying pan over a medium heat. Add the cinnamon stick and cardamon and let them sizzle a couple minutes. Add the onions and cook for around 5 minutes until softened but not browning.
Stir in the garlic and ginger, cook a minute, then add the dried spices (coriander, turmeric, chili, cinnamon and cloves). Stir through to mix.
Next, add the ground beef (or other ground meat) and brown all over, breaking up and stirring as you go. Add the tomato and stir through. Cook around 5 minutes or so until the tomato appears cooked then add the peas. Cook a minute or two more then serve. Often traditionally served with Indian breads such as paratha, also works well with rice.
Like Indian food? Try these other tasty dishes:
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