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Thursday, 14 February 2013

Chana Masala!

CHANA MASALA...Well this is how I do it. It may be a rude confession to make but I would say this recipe is the best of all.  I never follow any recipe exactly. I have this habit of making my own inclusion and exclusion to it. Once again I learnt this from my mom but I dare not make any changes to it. Very few ingredients actually and no store bought chole Masala or any other spices are used for flavoring  Everything comes from the chickpeas and the onion tomato gravy. Absolutely no other flavor interrupts that. Its just perfect with hot roties and poori. The same recipe also goes well for samosa Chana too. 
Serves 4

You will need

250 – 300g of Chickpeas
1 Onion Finely Chopped
4 Medium Tomatoes Pureed
2 tbsp Crushed Kasuri Methi
1 tbsp Coriander Powder
Approx. 2 – 3 cups of Chickpea Stock
4 tbsp Oil
Salt to Taste

Onion Paste
2 Medium Onions
7 Cloves of Garlic
1” Ginger

The Cooking

Boil the chickpeas with enough water till they are soft. I usually do this in a pressure cooker and cook it till it gives one sound. This way is easy and fast. Drain and reserve the stock for the gravy. Blend all the ingredients for the onion paste and keep aside. Heat the oil in a deep pan over high heat and sauté the chopped onions. Once the onions start to go brown add the onion paste and stir well.

Bring the heat to medium high and sprinkle the kasuri methi crushed between your palms. Now, this is a very important stage. Be patient and cook the onions till they turn dark brown (NOT BLACK) and they no long stick to the bottom of the pan. At this stage the onions are well caramelized and all the raw flavors are gone. This would take around 10 min. Sprinkle chili powder, garam masala, coriander powder and salt and sauté for a couple of mins.

Now stir in the pureed tomatoes, careful it will splatter all over. Stir the tomatoes well and cook covered for 10 – 15 min on low heat stirring occasionally. You will see the color of the gravy has changed to a bright red and now pour in the stock. This needs to boil well for another 5 min before you add the chickpeas. Toss in the chickpeas and cook covered on medium high heat for 20 – 30 min or till all the excess stock has evaporated and oil starts to separate from the gravy.

Important Pointers:
  • For any gravy sautéing the onions and tomatoes are very important. It will take some time and you must be patient. If you don’t you are sure to taste the raw flavours of onions and tomatoes in the end, and nobody wants that. 

Happy Cooking!


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