Sunday, January 30, 2011

Channa or Chole Masala /Chikpeas or Garbanzo Beans in Tomato Gravy..

Channa-Batura is a welcome dish for any Indian on any given day!!
A famous north indian cuisine, the channa masala is nothing but chikpeas cooked in a spicy tomato gravy and the batura is an Indian bread which is fried in oil.The two make an awesome combo!!
Rich in protein and easy to make this is a perfect dish for any occasion.
There are many versions of this recipe, but this one is very simple and tasty and I would like to share the same:


Chikpeas/ Garbanzo beans- 3 Cups or 1 lb canned chikpeas

Toamtoes-2 large

Tomato paste-1 Tbsp (optnl) 

Ginger- an inch piece

Garlic- 2 pods (optnl)

Green chillies- 2 finely chopped

Cumin-1 Tbsp

Besan/Chikpea flour- 1 Tbsp

Red Chilly powder-1 Tsp

Dhaniya powder- 2 Tbsp

Turmeric- 1 Tsp

Garam Masala- 1 Tsp

Asafoetida- a pinch

Bay leaf- one

Cinnamon- one inch stick

Salt to taste

Oil-2 Tbsp

Chopped Cilantro- to garnish


1.Wash the chikpeas well and soak them overnight or for 6-8 hrs in cold water.If using canned chikpeas, no need to saok it in water.

2.Pressure the soaked chikpeas till soft, but not mushy.

3.Grind the tomatoes, ginger and garlic into a paste.

4.Heat oil in a pan and when hot, add the bay leaf, cinnamon, cumin seeds and then the besan flour and fry it for two minutes till it turns slightly brown in colour.

5.Add the green chillies, the ground paste, tomato paste if using ( i use the paste for the colour) and the turmeric, red chilly powder and the coriander powder.

6.Cook for 5 to 6 minutes till the oil separates from the mixture and it reduces to half in quantity.

7.Next add the cooked chikpeas, salt and 2 cups of water and mix it well.

8.Simmer the heat and the cook it covered for about ten to fifteen minutes.

9.Open lid and mash the chikpeas slightly with a ladle,add the garam masala and cook for another minute.

10.Remove from heat, garnish with chopped cilantro and serve hot with batura, rotis or Jeera Rice.

Note:If the gravy is too thick, add water and cook it on low heat for till you reach the required consistency.
Adding besan flour gives thickness and extra flour to the gravy (tip from Manjula's kitchen).
The spice levels can be adjusted accordingly to suit your taste buds.

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