Pindi Chana

I saw this recipe and was eager to try it for several reasons:

  1. Cooking with tea – from chamomile cupcakes to Tea Eggs, I’m always excited to cook with tea. In this recipe it stains the chickpeas a deep brown.
  2. Cooking with pomegranate seeds (anardana) – I acquired these for making chapli kebabs, and like adding these little tart and unexpected additions.
  3. Named for Rawalpindi! I’ve been there!

It turned out quite nice! I love to make a big pot of chickpeas or lentils to have around for a day or two, will definitely add these to the rotation.

Pindi Chana

Adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor, mostly because cooking with dried chickpeas require forethought that I don’t have

For the chana masala

  • 1 tablespoon pomegranate seeds
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoons amchoor powder
  • pinch turmeric

Lightly toast the spices in a dry pan, crush lightly with a mortar and pestle, then set aside

For the pindi chana

  • 2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 teabags
  • Salt
  • 4 tablespoons ghee, divided
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon cumin powder
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 roma tomatoes, quartered
  • 4-6 green chilies, trimmed and slit
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala

In a medium saucepan, heat the chickpeas, teabags, a good sprinkle of salt, and water to cover. Simmer for 10 minutes and set aside.

In a heavy-bottomed pot, karahi or wok, heat 3 tablespoons of ghee. Add cumin seeds and heat until they sizzle, then add onions and saute until they are golden brown, stirring often and being careful not to burn. Add garlic paste, ginger paste, cumin, coriander, red chili, and turmeric powders, and saute for another minute or two.

Add the chickpeas along with a cup or two of the cooking liquid (I started with about a cup and added more as it got a little dry – you want some sauce, but not for it to be soupy).

In a separate pan, heat a tablespoon ghee. Heat tomato and chilis with a good sprinkle of salt for a minute (crush the tomatoes slightly as they start to break down), then add chana masala and garam masala. Toss the mixture for another minute, then stir into the chickpeas.

Mix well and cook at a low simmer for 10-15 minutes until it thickens, adding more cooking liquid or water if necessary.