Chana masala (spiced chickpeas) is a staple in my kitchen and definitely my go-to dish when entertaining. This intensely spiced, tangy, aromatic dish makes for a healthy, protein packed dinner.
This dish can quickly be made if you have the spices roasted and blended in advance (or you can use ready made chana masala spice which is readily available). I recently made a batch of this spice blend to speedup my weeknight cooking. After researching quiet a few recipes and several trials, I now have the perfect recipe that I am thrilled to share with you! This blend uses Kashmiri red chilies that give the dish a deep orange color and just the right amount of heat and dried mango powder to enhance the tangy tomato flavor. The spice blend uses few basic spices and can be made ahead in a big batch or can also be made while you are sauteing onions for this chana masala recipe. Here is the recipe using my chana masala spice blend that can be made in a jiffy.
1 cup white chickpeas
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 tomatoes chopped
4 garlic cloves minced
½ inch ginger grated
1 tablespoon ghee
1 tbsp chana masala spice blend
1 black tea bag (optional)
1 small boiled potato peeled and cubed (optional)
Salt to taste
Cilantro for garnish (optional)
- Soak white chickpeas in water overnight or 8-10 hours and pressure cook them until soft. I sometimes pressure cook them with a tea bag to give the dish a rich smoky flavor and deep color. Tea bag can be discarded once the chickpeas are cooked. You can also use rinsed and drained canned chickpeas.
- Heat ghee in a medium skillet. Add chopped onions and sauté on medium-high heat until it turns golden brown. Add ginger and garlic. Mix well and cook for another minute.
- Add tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes stirring few times until the tomatoes are soft and mushy.
- Add chana masala spice blend and mix well. Add boiled chickpeas and salt to taste. Add 1/4th cup of water(more or less) to bring the curry to your desired consistency. Occasionally I also add cubed boiled potato to this dish. You can add more spice blend if you are looking for a spicier chana masala, especially if you decide to add the potato. Simmer for 5 minutes and garnish with cilantro.
Serve with steamed basmati rice or paratha!