This is a super satisfying dish that is great for weekday meals.
We first enjoyed this dish as part of an informal Indian cooking lesson with our friend, Aruna. Aruna doesn't follow a recipe, but rather goes by instinct and experience. The results are always pure magic. We jotted down the steps as best we could as she went along, resulting in the recipe shared below. While her version will always taste better (sorry, it's true), this recipe hits the spot and is thankfully unbelievably forgiving.
Aruna's dish was made in a pressure cooker, as described below, but could easily be made on the stovetop or in a slow cooker.
- 1 cup dried chickpeas (pre-soaked)
- 3 small green chilis (or 1/2 serrano pepper, sliced lengthwise)
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 inch piece of ginger
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon chana masala (or garam masala if preferred)
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 large tomato, diced (or 1 15oz can of diced tomatoes drained)
- 1 15 oz can of coconut milk + refill can with water
Add green chilis, garlic, and ginger to a food processor to create a paste. Pulse until a smooth paste. (Or grate garlic and ginger and chop chilis by hand if preferred).
Set the pressure cooker to sauté mode and add olive oil. Once heated, add the aromatic paste made above and stir until fragrant (~1 min). Add cumin seeds and turmeric and cook until cumin seeds are browned (~2 min). Then add diced red onion and sauté until translucent (~3 min). Next, add chopped tomatoes, salt, and chana masala, stir and cook until tomatoes have softened (~2 min). Blend with a handheld mixer, if available, to lightly puree the ingredients.
Add in the chickpeas, coconut milk and then fill the coconut milk can with water and pour into the pot. Mix well.
Secure lid and set pressure cooker for 1hr (if using pre-soaked dry chickpeas). If you've already cooked yours, set for 25 minutes. Release pressure after allotted time, stir, and enjoy!
Garnish with cilantro and serve with basmati rice and naan bread. Enjoy!