My diet for the most part is pretty healthy, but it's missing a few things....Vegetables!!! So who really eats as many as they should?..and I refuse rabbit food. So I've been trying to eat at least a couple vegetarian meals every week...to fill in a few gaps. And let me tell you...Nobody does vegetarian better than Indians...and one dish I can't get enough of is Chana Masala.
So if you are one of those people who is just totally lost when it comes to Indian food...Chana Masala is a chickpea curry...and the best use of chickpeas I have discovered to date.
Most of the ingredients in this recipe are easy to find...except the amchoor (sometimes you see it spelled amchur). It's a powder made from dried green mangoes. It gives whatever you're cooking a wonderful sour flavor. If you can't find it just substitute a squeeze of lime juice.
1 tbs vegetable oil
1 tsp cumin seed
1 red onion, diced
1 or 2 green chiles, stems removed, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
2 cups chopped tomatoes, canned or fresh
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tbs ground coriander
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 cup water
1 tsp kosher salt
2 15 oz cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 tbs amchoor or the juice of 1/2 a lime
chopped cilantro, for garnish
In a large skillet heat the oil over medium-high heat. Drop the cumin seeds and cook for 5 to 10 second, 'til the cumin seeds turn reddish brown. Add the onions, chiles, garlic, and ginger, saute until browned. Then add the cumin, coriander, turmeric, and garam masala, and cayenne pepper. Stir and cook for about a minute. Then add the tomatoes and the salt. Reduce the heat to medium, and cook until the tomatoes begin to break down. Add the water and continue to cook until the tomatoes have broken down. Then add the chickpeas, cook for 10 minutes. Add the amchoor or lime juice, cook for 1 additional minute. Taste and season with more salt if needed.
I like to serve Chana Masala with rice and naan or kulchas.