Sunday, June 28, 2009

Spicy Indian Chickpeas/Chana Masala

As I've mentioned before, I'm not the biggest fan of beans, though I try to eat them at least somewhat regularly. Indian cooking has really helped with that as there are so many yummy spices and things added to them to make them so very delicious, like in this dish. What's also helped with my bean eating are the dishes that Lisa (of Lisa's Kitchen) makes! This is one that she suggested I try when I was looking to cook more Indian food, and I've defnitely fallen in love with it. It's intensely flavoured, for the most part uses pantry staples (assuming mustard seeds, cumin seeds and cardamom pods are pantry staples for you of course ;) ), and most importantly makes me look forward to eating beans. It definitely falls into the category of dishes to make again and again. I've also recently purchased a few Indian cookbooks (660 Curries, Indian in 6, and 5 Spices, 50 Dishes) so expect more Indian recipes from me!

If this sounds good, you might also like:
Chickpea Cutlets with Mustard Sauce
Middle Eastern Chickpea Soup
Curried Sweet Potato Soup
Artichoke Rotini Pasta

Spicy Indian Chickpeas/Chana Masala
Adapted from Lisa's Kitchen

My adaptations were to make it less spicy, use less lemon, and not add the cinnamon stick.

1 1/4 cups of dried chickpeas
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp butter
1 teaspoon of black mustard seeds
2 teaspoons of cumin seeds
5 green or black cardamom pods
2 bay leaves

1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
1/2 - 1 tablespoon of ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne
1 teaspoon of turmeric

2 finely chopped hot red and green chilies
1 large clove of garlic, finely chopped
1 - 2 inch piece of ginger, grated or finely chopped

2 medium-large tomatoes, finely diced
juice from half of one small lemon
1 1/2 teaspoons of sea salt
freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon of garam masala

Soak the chickpeas overnight in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 - 2 hours or until the chickpeas are buttersoft. Drain well and set aside.

Heat the butter and oil in a large pot. When hot, add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, and bay leaves. Stir and fry until the mustard seeds begin to pop and the cumin seeds begin to brown.

Throw in the onions, and stir and fry until they begin to brown. Add the ground coriander, ground cumin, cayenne and turmeric to the pan and stir until the onions are well coated with the spices - about 1 minute. Then, add the fresh chilies, garlic and ginger. Stir and fry for a few minutes.

Next, add the tomatoes, half of the lemon juice and cook to thicken, about 10 minutes. Put the chickpeas into the tomato mixture, add the salt, some black pepper, half of the parsley, the remaining lemon juice and the garam masala. Cook for about 10 minutes to blend the flavours, adding a bit of water if necessary. The chickpeas should be fairly dry.

Remove the bay leaves if you are using whole ones, and the cinnamon stick. Stir in the remaining parsley and serve hot.


Snooky doodle said...

what a nice dish! I love indian food. I ll try this one :)

Erin said...

This looks delicious! I haven't tried much Indian food, but this sounds like something I would love.

Steph said...

I'm not a huge fan of Indian spices, but that looks delicious! I love chickpeas though. That's the kind of dish that looks like you can eat the whole pot.

Anh said...

I am trying to include more legumes in my diet as well. This seems to be an excellent recipe. :)

Ricki said...

Sounds scrumptious! I love, love Indian food! I'm going to post a simple dal (curried lentil) recipe soon and I bet you'd like that, too--also uses many of these same pantry staples!

Lisa said...

Me smiles :) 660 Curries is one of the best investments I have made. I just know you will make good use of that treasured collection.

Hannah said...

Love this dish, but I've actually never made it myself. I think it's about time to change that... Definitely saving this recipe!

jd said...

This sounds perfect! I absolutely love chana masala - in fact, I ordered it at an Indian restaurant this weekend!

With dishes this good, I bet you'll be completely in love with beans before you know it :)

Grace said...

although i don't generally like things made with turmeric, i have to admit that this is a very enticing dish. it looks like true comfort food.

Hilary said...

Love chickpeas, love Indian food. All of a sudden I would like to eat this for dinner tonight instead of the BBQed sausages I'd been looking forward to!

Teanna said...

When I say I can eat chickpeas every day of my life, I mean I can eat chickpeas every. day. of. my. life. By far, my favorite food... and there is nothing better than chana masala! Looks like I know what is for dinner tonight!

Ele said...

This looks delicious, I think I'll make it later this week. Thanks for posting! I also used to not like legumes too much, but Indian cooking made a convert out of me. I now love them in many other forms, too!

Deborah said...

This is something that I'd love - but I don't think my husband would. I'll have to try it out when he's not going to be around one night!

Maria said...

I love a dish with a kick!

Anonymous said...

MMmm... I LOVE beans! AND spicy food! This lookes delicious. I'm going to have to try it!

Juliana said...

Yummie, spicy all the flavors that you have in it...looks so tasty.

Kevin said...

What a tasty looking chickpea dish!