Chickpea chat with date-tamarind chutney

By • February 27, 2017 0 Comments

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Author Notes: Indian comfort food that isn’t full of carbs is hard to find. Lately, I’ve been on a mission to figure out how I can make these flavorful, comforting, delicious foods from my husband’s childhood in a way that’s healthy and light. So this is a take on Bhel Puri, a beloved street food snack that typically relies on puffed rice for the crunch. I substituted the rice with shallow fried chickpeas. The tamarind-date chutney is what pulls it all together. Renee Lynn Frojo

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Serves 4

For the tamarind chutney

  • 8 Medjool dates
  • 3 to 5 piquillo peppers
  • 2 tablespoons tamarind paste
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

For the chaat

  • 1/4 cup peanut oil
  • 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas
  • 2 to 3 pinches Kosher salt
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup packed mint, chopped
  • 1/4 cup packed cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Fresno chili, thinly sliced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/4 cup roasted pistachios, chopped
  • 1/4 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  1. Start by making the chutney. Soak the dates and piquillo peppers in warm water for 15 minutes until soft. Remove the pits from dates. Place the dates and peppers in a food processor or blender with the remaining chutney ingredients. Add ¼ cup water and blend until smooth.
  2. Transfer the chutney to a small sauce pot. Add ½ cup of water, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until slightly reduced, 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Next, make the chaat. In a skillet over medium-high heat, warm the peanut oil. Working in 2 batches, add chickpeas and sauté, stirring frequently, until golden and crispy, 10 to 15 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chickpeas to plates lined with paper towels to drain. Sprinkle with salt and let cool.
  4. In a large bowl, toss all the remaining ingredients together, minus the yogurt and pistachios. Drizzle with as much of the tamarind chutney as you’d like and give it a toss. Add salt, to taste. Garnish with pistachios, peanuts and yogurt.

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