Masala Kheema - Dry Spicy Minced Meat

Masala Kheema
Rovingi/Flickr/CC BY 2.0
    25 mins
Ratings (26)

Kheema or mince can be made with any meat you prefer... chicken, lamb, pork, goat meat or any combinations of these meats. My personal favourite mixture is minced pork and veal. It is extremely versatile and just changing the masala can result in a great new taste each time.

Masala Kheema is a delicious dish that goes well with so many other foods, it is a great addition to most menus. I love making it because it is so easy and this recipe, if followed well, is 'fail-proof' (to quote not only my friends but also reviewers on the Site who have tried it).

Don't let the name fool you... Masala Kheema is not 'chilli hot'! However, the garam masala in it does give it a warming 'heat' that perfectly complements the natural flavours of the meat. Don't let the amount of the individual spices alarm you as the combination has been tried and tested by my friends, family and myself thousands of times! It works every time!

Masala Kheema can be served as a main for lunch or dinner and being a dry dish, tastes great with Chapatis (Indian flatbread) or Parathas (pan fried Indian flatbread). If you want to eat it with plain boiled rice, be sure to add a Daal dish (soup like lentils). Add a leafy green salad and you have the perfect, well-rounded meal. 

Masala Kheema is the meal that keeps on giving... if you have any leftover, lucky you! It tastes even better the next day and makes a great toasted sandwich or wrap filling. If you can't or don't want to use it the next day, Masala Kheema freezes brilliantly for later!

Here's how you cook it...

What You'll Need

  • 1/2 kg/ approximately 1 lb ground beef/ minced beef (you can use any ground meat you prefer for this recipe)
  • 3 tbsps vegetable/ canola/ sunflower cooking oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 medium-sized onions chopped fine
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 2 tbsps coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp garam masala (see link below for recipe to make your own)
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes chopped fine
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime/ lemon
  • Chopped coriander leaves to garnish

How to Make It

  • Heat the vegetable/ canola/ sunflower cooking oil in a wok or deep pan, on medium heat.
  • Add the cumin seeds and fry for 1 minute or until the seeds stop spluttering.
  • Now add the onions and sauté till they turn a pale golden color.
  • Add the ginger and garlic pastes and fry for 1 minute to get rid of the 'raw' fragrance from them.
  • Now add the powdered spices - coriander, cumin, garam masala and salt to taste and sauté, stirring almost continuously, until the oil begins to separate from the masala (the spice and onion mixture). When this happens, you know the spices are cooked to perfection!
  • Now add the minced meat to this spice-onion mixture and sauté until browned. Stir often to prevent burning. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, stir and cook till they are soft.
  • Turn the fire off, add the lime/ lemon juice and stir to mix well.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve with Chapatis (Indian flatbread) or Parathas (pan fried Indian flatbread) or plain boiled, fragrant Basmati rice.

Tip: Add more substance to your Masala Kheema by putting in a cup full of fresh or frozen green peas or 2-3 potatoes (washed and cut into 1.5 cm cubes) or both, just after the meat is browned.