Sunday, November 27, 2011

Chana Masala

I fell in love with this dish at my local Indian restaurant. Made of garbanzo beans, tomatoes and lots of spices, it is filling and satisfying. While my recipe isn't quite as perfect as the restaurant's  (I'm pretty sure their secret ingredient is "nectar of the Gods" and geez...I'm fresh out...) it does come pretty darn close.

(*Garam Masala, listed below, is a spice blend available at your local grocery store that usually consists of cardamom, coriander, pepper, and cinnamon. But blends vary, and it doesn't really matter what blend you get.)

I like mine very spicy (read: as in spices, not particularly heat level) so I put some options in there to allow for your preference.


2 cups cooked garbanzo beans
1-2 tsp ground cumin (to taste)
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp ginger, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1/2 tsp chili paste or 1 chopped fresh chili (optional)
1 tsp ground coriander seeds
1 tsp turmeric or curry powder
handful of chopped spinach (optional)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala plus a bit more for final seasoning, if necessary

Heat oil in a large skillet and saute over medium heat: the onion, garlic, cumin powder, coriander, turmeric or curry powder, ginger, garam masala and chili paste (if using) until soft and aromatic, being careful not to burn the spices.

Stir in the chopped tomatoes. Add in a little (1/4 cup or less) water, if necessary to make a thin sauce and simmer the sauce for about 5 minutes to combine the flavors.

Stir in the garbanzo beans, chopped fresh spinach and take a taste. Adjust spices or add a small amount of water as necessary (I usually add a bit more garam masala here) and then cover and simmer for about 10-15 minutes.

This dish does well made in advance, even the night before and can be left to simmer for a bit longer on the stove, if necessary.

No comments:

Post a Comment