Chana Masala (or Chole) is a classic Indian dish and a staple in my kitchen.
It is one of those dishes that is great anytime of the year - serving as my comfort food in the winter and great in the summer when tomatoes are in season. My recipe uses tomato paste, but can easily be substituted for a diced fresh tomato in the summer (just might take a bit longer to cook down).
For a richer taste, try using ghee (clarified butter) instead of olive oil. You can purchase at health foods stores and Indian grocery stores, but I prefer to make my own. For a simple recipe, visit Fran's House of Ayurveda.
1 tbsp olive oil or ghee
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 small red onion, diced
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 15 oz can garbanzo beans
1/2 tsp salt
juice of 1 lemon
a few sprigs cilantro, chopped (for garnish)
1. In a large wok or skillet, heat olive oil or ghee at medium high heat. Add turmeric.
2. Cook onion until golden brown and fragrant, about five minutes.
3. Add tomato paste, garam masala, ground coriander and cumin. Cook for another seven minutes, and stir to form a nice paste. You might start to see the oil separate.
4. Add garbanzo beans (with reserved water). Reduce heat to medium and cook for another ten minutes or so. Should form a nice sauce. Remove from heat.
5. Add salt and lemon juice. Adjust as necessary.
6. Serve on plate with basmati rice. Add cilantro as garnish.
I recommend eating this dish with my recipe for South Indian Green Beans. They look and taste great together. Enjoy!