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Author Notes: This recipe comes from my home town of Calcutta. Black chickpeas, also known as Bengal gram, are a staple food in Calcutta. They are sold in many ways: as whole roasted cruncy nibblets, in tangy street salads with cucumber, onion and cumin, as a spicy curry. They are also added to simple vegetable preparations of eggplant, pumpkin and greens for depth and nourishment. Here I'm featuring one of my beloved preparations of this chickpea. - CalcuttaChow
- 1 cup black chickpeas, known as kala chana
- 1 cup onions, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
- 1 cup tomatoes, chopped
- a small handful of coriander leaves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons oil
- Dry Spices:
- 2 teaspoons Coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mango powder, called amchur
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder, optional
- 1 bay leaf
- salt to taste
- Soak the black chickpeas (kala chana) overnight (6-12 hours). Discard the water, and place in the pressure cooker. Fill with water that is a 1/2 inch above the chana. Cook until soft. Usually 4 whistles on medium heat work or 2 whistles on medium heat, combined with 15-20 minutes of cooking thereafter on low heat. Set the cooker aside and allow steam to escape. Drain the chickpeas and save the liquid for cooking.
- Next, heat the oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Add the onions first with the bay leaf, and cook until golden-brown, stirring frequently. Next, add the chopped ginger and garlic and fry for a few minutes, taking care that the ginger and garlic don’t burn.
- Add the chopped tomatoes along with all the dry spices. Mix well and cook until the oil floats on top, stirring frequently. This takes a while.
- Add the boiled chana, some of the reserved liquid, and the chopped coriander. Simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes. Serve hot with rice or Indian bread.
Tags: bulk bin
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