Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chickpea Curry (Channa Masala or Chole)

I love this recipe because it is very easy to make, I always try to have my ingredients at hand so I can prep a healthy and nutritious meal in no time. A well stocked pantry is your biggest tool for saving yourself from saturated fat and sodium loaded restaurant meals which will in turn allow you to spend the money you save on healthy and wholesome ingredients. For chickpeas I always try to use dry chickpeas soak the entire package overnight and freeze them so I can have extra for the next time and I just thaw them overnight in the refrigerator. It takes more time but canned chickpeas have more sodium whereas there is virtually no added sodium with the dry version, but it is still ok to use them, I still have couple of them in my pantry just in case if I am in a hurry. Just make sure to drain and rinse well if you are using canned version. 

Just a quick note about the health benefits: If you're wondering how to replace red meat in your menus, become a fan of chickpeas also known as garbanzo beans. When combined with whole grains such as rice, garbanzos provide virtually fat-free high quality protein. In addition to providing slow burning complex carbohydrates, garbanzos can increase your energy by helping to replenish your iron stores.

1 cup dry chickpeas or 2 (14 oz) canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 (16 oz) canned tomatoes, petite diced
1 tbs mild red pepper paste (optional)
2 tbsp canola oil
1 onion, petite diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp mustard seed
1 dried chili, or 1/2 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp of ground coriander
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tbsp salt, or to taste
1 tbsp chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)


1. Heat oil in a large pot and add onions and garlic and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.

2. If using red pepper paste add the paste and stir for 2-3 min. and then add the tomatoes and all of the spices and stir to combine. Add the chickpeas and cook, stirring occasionally for about 30-35 minutes. Serve with bread or basmati rice. Add cilantro for garnish if using.

This recipe is my third submission for this month's My Legume Love Affair, one of my favorite events brought by Susan from the Well Seasoned Cook and hosted by A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa

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