This black-eyed peas curry (lobia recipe) combines earthy black-eyed peas with aromatic spices. This curry with black-eyed peas is easy to prepare, making it a fantastic choice for both busy weeknights and leisurely weekend dinners.
About Black-eyed peas curry
Black-eyed peas, or lobia, are versatile and delicious. This lobia recipe has been a go-to meal in my family, especially on busy weekdays. It's incredibly simple to make, but its rich flavor never fails to wow.
With pantry staple ingredients and an easy recipe, this dish is ideal for anyone looking to whip up a quick yet hearty meal.
This black-eyed beans curry or lobia masala pairs well with rice or flatbreads, making it a versatile option for lunch or dinner.
These simple yet essential ingredients make the aromatic and flavorful black-eyed peas curry.
- Black-eyed Peas: I cooked black-eyed peas from scratch at home and used them to make this curry. You can also use canned black-eyed peas. Please check my Instant Pot black-eyed peas post to cook soaked or dried black-eyed peas at home. These legumes are tender and creamy, providing a hearty base and rich texture to the curry.
- Water: Essential for cooking and creating the desired consistency of the curry. You can also use coconut milk to make this curry.
- Aromatics: Onions, garlic, and ginger will flavor the curry and enhance its overall taste. You can use ginger and garlic paste if you do not have fresh garlic or ginger. You can skip any of these if you do not have them handy.
- Tomato: Tomato lends a tangy and slightly acidic taste, contributing to the curry's thick and rich texture. I used fresh chopped tomatoes; you could also use canned tomatoes or tomato puree to make this curry.
- Garam Masala Powder: A blend of warm spices that brings depth and complexity to the curry, and this is optional.
- Spice powders: I used red chili powder, ground coriander, and turmeric powder to make this curry. Instead of red chili powder, you can use red chili flakes, paprika powder, or cayenne pepper to make this curry. Adjust the spice according to your spice preference.
- Oil: I used coconut oil to saute the aromatics. You could also use other oils like avocado oil, olive oil, butter, or ghee to make this curry.
- Salt: Balances flavors and brings out the natural tastes of the ingredients. Adjust as per your taste preference.
How to make Black-eyed Peas Curry
Prep the Ingredients
- Soak the black-eyed peas for 4 to 8 hours. After soaking, rinse the peas a couple of times and drain the water completely.
- Add these rinsed black-eyed peas to the stovetop pressure cooker or Instant Pot inner pot.
- Add 2 cups water and pressure cook for 2 to 3 whistles. If using an Instant Pot, cook for 5 minutes on high pressure. Please check my Instant Pot Black-eyed peas recipe for detailed instructions on how to cook dried or soaked black-eyed peas.
- Once the pressure cooker completes cooking, drain the water from the cooked black-eyed peas and keep them aside.
- While the beans are cooking, finely chop onions and grate ginger and garlic. If you are using veggies, chop them as per your preference. And finely chop or puree the tomatoes.
Saute the Aromatics
- Heat a cooking pot over medium heat and add oil. Then add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, grated garlic, grated ginger, and let the seeds splutter.
- Add finely chopped onions and fry them until they turn golden brown.
Add veggies and spices
- Add the chopped tomatoes to the pot and cook until they break down and form a thick base.
- Then goes the chopped veggies. Add the veggies of your choice and stir them well. Skip this step if you are not using veggies while making this curry.
- Add garam masala, red chili powder, ground coriander, turmeric powder, and salt. Adjust the spice levels according to your preference.
- Mix everything well so that spice powders get coated well with the veggies.
Simmer the Curry
- Now add water and cook the curry till the veggies are almost cooked. If you do not use veggies, you can skip this step.
- Add cooked black-eyed peas to this veggies mixture.
- Mix everything well and simmer the curry over low heat for 6 to 8 minutes or until the curry reaches your desired consistency.
- If the curry appears too thick, gently add more water to achieve your desired consistency.
Serve and Enjoy
- Before serving, check the consistency. If you prefer a thicker curry, simmer a bit longer to let it reduce.
- Finally, add chopped cilantro leaves and lime or lemon juice. Mix the curry well and get ready to indulge in your flavorful Black-eyed Peas Curry!
- Soaking dried black-eyed peas overnight reduces cooking time. If you use canned peas, rinse them well to remove excess salt.
- You can adjust the spice levels by altering the quantity of red chili powder or adding a dollop of yogurt to mellow the spice. Green chili is optional, and skip it if you like mild curry.
- Instead of water, use vegetable broth or coconut milk to cook the curry for a richer taste.
Variations & Substitutions
- Blend some of the cooked black-eyed peas and add them to the curry for a creamy variation. Additionally, use the leftover water from cooking the black-eyed peas instead of regular water.
- Adding veggies is optional, and I used carrots and beans while making this recipe. You can also use potatoes, sweet potatoes, or bell peppers for a different taste and texture.
- Based on the availability, I also add spinach, kale, or other leafy green veggies to this curry. Add them at the end and simmer the curry for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Garam masala powder is optional; you can omit it or substitute it with other spice mixtures for a different taste, such as curry powder, Cajun spice powder, or Mexican spice mix. You can also use Punjabi garam masala to make Punjabi lobia.
How to serve this curry
I like to serve Black-eyed Peas Curry alongside flavored basmati rice or simple steamed rice for a classic and comforting meal.
You can also enjoy it with freshly made chapati, naan bread, or crusty bread to savor the curry's flavors with different textures.
Complement the curry with a side of yogurt, pickles, or a simple salad to balance the flavors and textures.
- Leftovers: Store any leftover Black-eyed Peas Curry in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.
- Reheating: When reheating, gently warm the curry on the stovetop. Add a splash of water if needed to restore its consistency.
- For extended storage, you can freeze the cooled curry in freezer-safe containers for up to 1-2 months.
- Thawing and Reheating: Thaw frozen curry in the refrigerator overnight before reheating. Reheat gently on the stovetop, adjusting the consistency as needed.
- You can also use whole spices like bay leaf, cinnamon, and cardamom to flavor the curry.
Soaking black-eyed peas will reduce the cooking time. But you can cook black-eyed peas without soaking them as well.
If the curry becomes too thick upon refrigeration, gently reheat it with a splash of water or broth to reach the desired consistency.
You can use canned black-eyed peas to make this curry. Rinse them thoroughly before using them to remove excess sodium.
This black-eyed peas curry is vegan, as we use oil to make it. Make sure to use water or vegetable broth to cook the curry. And ensure that spice blends are vegan-friendly. And this recipe is gluten-free also.
To make the curry spicier, add extra red chili powder or chopped fresh green chilies according to your preference.
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Indian style Black eyed peas curry (Lobia recipe)
- 3 cups black eyed peas Cooked (1 cup dried peas will yield 3 cups cooked ones)
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup onion finely chopped
- 1 cup tomato finely chopped or pureed
- 2 cups veggies Optional, I used carrots and beans
- 1 teaspoon garlic grated
- 1 teaspoon ginger grated
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon garam masala powder optional
- 2 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon lemon or lime juice
- ¼ cup cilantro leaves chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt adjust accordingly
- 1 green chili optional
Prep the Ingredients
- Cook the black-eyed peas and keep them aside.
- Finely chop onions and grate ginger and garlic.
- Gather all the spice powders and keep them aside.
- If using veggies, chop them into small cubes. Finely chop tomatoes or puree them.
Making black-eyed peas curry
- In a pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, garlic, and ginger. Let the seeds splutter. Add green chili, if using.1 teaspoon garlic, 1 teaspoon ginger, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, ½ teaspoon mustard seeds, 2 tablespoon oil, 1 green chili
- Add chopped onions and saute them until they turn golden brown and fragrant.½ cup onion
- Add chopped tomatoes and sauté until they soften and form a thick paste.1 cup tomato
- Now add veggies if you use them.2 cups veggies
- Add spice powders - garam masala, red chili, coriander, turmeric powder and salt. Mix well to coat the aromatics.½ teaspoon red chili powder, ½ teaspoon turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon ground coriander, ½ teaspoon garam masala powder, 1 teaspoon salt
- Add water and cook the veggies until they are almost cooked.2 cups water
- Stir in cooked black-eyed peas and mix thoroughly.3 cups black eyed peas
- Let the curry simmer on low heat, allowing the flavors to meld together and the consistency to thicken.
- Adjust water quantity if needed for desired thickness.
- Take the curry out of the heat and add finely chopped cilantro and lemon juice.¼ cup cilantro leaves, 1 teaspoon lemon or lime juice
- Mix everything well, and the delicious Black-eyed peas curry is ready to serve!