When it comes to entertaining, I prefer to have my invitations sent out well in advance. While that buys me enough time to plan a menu (which usually includes this Chickpeas Curry) and work out the finer details of the evening, it also gives me plenty of time to prepare for the guests attending. And by that, I don’t certainly mean that I spend a good chunk of the coming days rehearsing a jig for them. No, nothing like that! I prefer my guests to entertain themselves without having me burst into a dance. What I do mean, however, is that it gives me ample time to clean up the house.
Since I’m someone who could easily let the pile of dirty laundry grow till we literally (literally, like Hubby Dear waking me up a few mornings ago at the shock of not having any clean shirts left to wear to work. Thank goodness for a semi-casual work environment where a golf t-shirt is seen as no reason to question!) run out of clean clothes, or let the vacuum cleaner sit snugly in the corner gathering dust, or let the endless magazines I subscribe to grow into an unbelievable pile, much like the leaning tower of Piza, er I mean, paper.
Yea, so I guess you’re kinda getting where I’m hinting at. I hate to admit it, but as much as I would prefer otherwise, I hate to have last-minute guests. Even worse are those who think it’s so much fun to drop me a surprise visit. I always wonder if they’re the ones surprised by how much clutter one can accumulate with just a weeks subscription of magazines and newspapers. But don’t get horrified. It’s not as bad as you’re imagining it. I DO NOT live amidst bits of paper scattered throughout the house (I swear Mom, I clean – there are really not that many papers lying around!), neither do I have to wade my way through the different rooms by tripping over things.
For the most part, my floors are carpeted and clear. The main problem lies in, or rather on, my table-tops. With all my writing assignments, I find myself constantly rummaging through books and magazines for both, research and inspiration. My coffee table, and part of my dining table are filled with my current favourites and articles that I want to keep close at hand. Then comes the endless cookbooks I love to collect, which get shoved from one room to another as I read them, due to lack of book shelf space. (Yes, I’ve actually added a book shelf to my birthday list for Hubby Dear. What? Don’t tell me you don’t have a list!)
And finally, my notebooks. I can’t even begin to count to the number of notebooks, pads and pieces of paper I’ve scribbled on since I started this blog. It’s rare, if ever, I finish one notebook before I start a new one. The reason for me having so many of them is that partway through, I always seem to misplace one, start a new one, misplace that, start another one, only to find the first one in some remote corner of my study! So yeah, it’s not that I dislike having people over, it’s just that I prefer to have the time to clean up a bit so as not to drive them away!
This recipe for my Chickpeas Curry is one that I often serve at my dinner parties. It uses a pantry staple, is simple enough to put together in a matter of minutes and absolutely, lip-smackingly delicious. Try it, and you might just find a new favourite to serve for dinner!
Chana Masala (Chickpeas Curry)
- 2 tbsp light cooking oil
- 1 medium-sized onion finely chopped
- 1 green chilli finely chopped
- 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tbsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- salt to taste
- 1 large tomato finely chopped
- 1 can chickpeas rinsed and drained
- water as needed
- finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
- lemon wedges for garnish
- Heat oil in a deep pan and add onions and green chillies. Fry for a few minutes till the onions get tender and lightly browned.
- Add in the ginger-garlic paste, tomato paste, spices and salt, and fry for a few seconds to mix everything well.
- Add in the chopped tomatoes and cook till tomatoes pulp and start to give out oil from the sides.
- Stir in about a cup of water, allow it to come to a boil, and then add chickpeas. Let it simmer covered for a few minutes till chickpeas are soft and tender to the touch. Add in more water if necessary, depending on the consistency of the curry you prefer.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro and lemon wedges.
If you like this recipe, then you will surely enjoy my Rajma.
Made this recipe? Rate it by clicking the number of stars on the recipe card. Want to share your version with me? Tag me on Instagram @hookedonheat
LOVE LOVE LOVE your site!!
I have a quick question… I’m living in Europe, so all the canned products are different sizes then back home (Montreal). Could you tell me the size of the chickpea can please? THX!
Can’t wait to give this a go… as well as a bunch of other recipes I just browsed through… they all look so delicious (Great photos BTW!).
Hi Wendy, glad you’re enjoying the site! The cans I usually use, measure to 540ml, which is roughly 1 1/2 cups of chickpeas. Hope that helps!
yum yum. I’ve just finished the chana masala. despite not having all the ingredients in stock I decided to give it a shot, and let me tell you, it was worth it. unlike my boyfriend, I love Indian food, so now he’s away on business, I can cook whatever I want (with him being out, I usually cook things he dislikes like spinach, gourd, indian…but on the overall, he’s extremely picky). when I asked him what is it in Indian meals that he hates, he couldn’t give me a satisfying answer, so I’m planning to cook something Indian (maybe this chana masala) and sell it to him as “some food I just conjured” and let’s see what he says.
yeah, and that habit of piling dirty clothes and no being able to keep a clean table, well, I have a theory, the bigger the table, the less space and the more mess is on it. so you’re definitely not alone in this :))
Hehe Zara, I love your theory, no wonder I have to much stuff – mine is huge! 😉 I understand how it frustrating it can be when the other person has different tastes. Maybe it’s the spices (flavours, not heat) that he’s not too fond of. try starting with something simpler, and then graduate to something more extravagant, maybe that way you can get an idea what flavour he’s not too fond of. I do hope you’ll both enjoy this dish. Do let me know! 🙂
Viji Senthil says
This looks simple. I will try it tomorrow….Thank You…Actually I am searching for the simplest channa masala reciepe for the past half an hour!! And found out,u….
wow, this was delicious! thank you … this was my first successful indian dish 🙂
Nice one.. I’ve just copied everything onto my cooking pan..!! keep rokin.!
[email protected] says
A friend of mine directed me to your site and I’ve had so much fun reading your posts that I completely lost track of time!
Hi Meena, i just made this and it came out delicious! have blogged about it on my blog and this is my entry for T&T. Wish u all the very best for your cookbook 🙂
Lorna Moravec says
This is the cooking site I have been looking for! I first wanted to try Indian food because of smelling the cooking that the owners of small Texas hotels were doing for themselves. In the small towns where I have lived, however, there haven’t been any Indian cafes. So I have been trying recipes online. But it is hit or miss because sometimes I don’t know what ingredients they mean or how much to put. It has all been yummy so far and smells like the cooking that Indian Texans do. Finding out how to make Ghee was a magical discovery! But this site makes it seem very easy to understand, and once I understand I think I will be fine. That is what happened when I was learning to cook Mexican foood. I love hot food. Thanks!
Mark F says
Channa Masala is one of my favorite dishes (along with vindaloo). Tomorrow, I’m going to try making it with the addition of spinach (sort of a combo Saag Paneer and Chole, minus the paneer). Not sure how it will come out, but I suspect it will be great. It’s pretty tough to screw up Indian food, once you get the hang of it.
Love the folksy approach with the story to the recipe. Also, your pictures make the dish look even more delic. And I’m in Waterloo .. 🙂
Anyhoo, I got a tip that readers might want to try. If anyone has had channa on the streets of Mumbai, they might recall that its slightly dark in color. I was never able to get that color and then I finally asked one of the vendors.
The key is that they use leftover water from chai. I typically add a tea bag now to my cooking in order to get that darker color 🙂
PS: Tried the Tamarind fish and the Hariyali Baingan. Both came out really well.
Hi there, I must say that you have done a wonderful job on your site and I thoroughly enjoyed my stay here, I thank you for sharing it with me!
I’ve not tried this one it looks yummy though. I’ve made chickpea curry before even though it’s spicy I think it’s so delicious!
The recipe turned out quite good..But i would add sauf/ Fennel seeds along with the Cumin seeds or even grind it togetherin the blender with tomato and stuff. Turns out quite well.
Hi. Thanks for the recipe. Just tried it for dinner. It was good, but I think next time I will try putting it in the blender, before adding the chickpeas. That will give a smoother texture and thicker gravy.
Hi I am first time visitor….. all ur recipes are great and planning to try ur mouth watering channa masala recipe.
Have you considered adding amchur or tamarind paste to add a bit of sourness? I really like to add a lot of tamarind paste at the end.
Love to a man’s heart is indeed through his stomach – looks like chana masala worked in your case really well:)
I’ve got a favourite chickpea curry recipe myself – will have to ‘modify’ it a bit after having seen yours!
I absolutely love your writing style!! Been reading it for a few days now! Such a difference from the typical recipe/cooking sites!! And it helps that I can relate to so many things that you said.. about the laundry piling up, running out of clean clothes, having 100s of notebooks because you keep misplacing them, subscription magazines still in their plastic bags piling up, and the fear of surprise visits!! 🙂 Hilarious!! But it helps to know I’m not alone!!
Anyway, I’m more than a month late, but belated Happy Anniversary!! 🙂
Again.. love your site.. thanks for making it seem so easy. I’ll try out the things that I usually don’t bother because they seem so difficult!! Thank You!! Love it love it love it!!
Nice article ..Visiting you for the first time.excellent blog
Just read your article on Chrisitan Monitor. Very Neat.
From a fellow GTA Westender (Oakville!), I’m waiting for your next post!
Looking forward to more beautiful pics!
ps. I think I liked the design of your blog with the clickable pics at the top!
great dish…love the pictures…I love masala chana…thanks for sharing…
it’s the recipe I’ve been looking for…i have the Nepalese version, I would love to try this for the coming mother’s day celebration.potluck of course..thanks
Tried this dish for dinner and it turned out well..thanks 🙂
My mother, who lives in the English countryside, cried when she discovered my local London grocery store stocked her beloved Chana Masala powder. I use it now all the time, but it’s great to learn the original recipe!
Chole turned out awesome. Thanks for the recipe. Waiting for the next one 🙂
The shirts admission made me giggle… I am terrible at things like that. Your channa masala looks divine.
All’s well that ends well. Happy Anniversary!
Loved your honesty Meena!Belated Anniversary wishes to the both of you!
First time on your blog! meena happy belated aniversary. for the laundry or cleaning we all are in the same boat i beleive.
Anika From Darwin says
Seriously, that was a lovely story!!!!!!!!!!!!! You are an inspiration!!! I know what it feels like to be a poor uni student with empty cupboards. Have a lovely day!!!
Cheers to the peas of love! Happy belated wedding anniversary!
I haven’t had much luck with canned chickpeas. In my opinion, the chickpeas don’t soak up the spices as well as I would like them to. And my hubby grew up on chana that was soaked in water overnight. Do you like them canned better than soaked?
Hi LF, personally for me, it’s the convenience I get from opening a can rather than having to presoak and then pressure them before I actually start on the cooking process. I do use the dried ones on occasion, and really can’t tell any difference. So yea, for a quick approach, I can definitely swear by the canned version! 🙂
Meena, I am with you. We clean when we hear the call that someone is coming over. You are definitely not alone. Chana masala is one of my favorites too.
What a great story, Meena! Belated Happy wedding anniversary!!!
It does look yummy!!!
Steamy Kitchen says
meena- you’re writing such a fun relaxing read! thank for your kind comments today. btw, what font did you use in your “take out menu” page? its a beautiful script.
Chaana Masala ..Too Good man …Yummy ..Belated Anni wishes
Looks absolutely gorgeous. Happy anniv. dear
This is very similar to one of my favorite go-to pantry dinners when it’s time to go grocery shopping. I’m obsessed with chickpeas!
I hear ya Meena! My place is just the same, my laundry pile doesn’t get touched till it hits the ceiling or we run out of clean clothes, whichever comes first! I hate pop-ins too, I stress out more about tidying up rather than the menu before any party. Cooking is easy!
Obviously u must’ve done a great job with the chickpeas if he is still sticking around after three years 😀
wow, this looks amazing! hooray for empty cupboards, chickpeas and future husbands.