When my sister Becky visited a few weeks ago, she mentioned her former roomate makes the best Chana Masala. I've had it in restaurants before, and it's definitely my go-to item on the menu when nothing else catches my eye. So I decided to ask Becks for her recipe and give it a try. When it comes to Indian or other Asian dishes, I like to have a recipe or at least ingredient guidelines because I'm not 100% sure of myself to make something up on my own. However, as I eat and cook more Indian food, I'm able to discern the spice profiles and combinations.
After recieving Becky's email with the recipe, I found out Sarah cooks just like me, taste and add, taste and adjust. This was the reply she gave me "garlic+onions+oil+curry+red pepper+turmeric+cumin+chickpeas+water+more of same spices+paprika+more of same spices = sarah's delicious chana masala. Serve over rice. She eyeballs everything."
So I could leave you with that recipe... or I could give you my approximate measurements. I'll give you my approximations, but honestly, I'd advise you to do it Sarah's way, and make it your own!
Sarah's Delicious Chana Masala
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 yellow onion, diced (after eating this, I wish I had used a mince rather than a dice)
2 tbsp. EVOO
1 tbsp. curry powder (I use Penzey's Maharajah)
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. turmeric
2 tsp. cumin
2 15 oz. cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1 28 oz. can whole tomatoes
1-2 cups water
Heat a soup pot over medium, add EVOO, garlic and onions.
Saute' for 5 minutes, or until edges begin to brown.
Add curry powder, cayenne, turmeric, cumin, paprika and tomatoes.
Bring to a simmer, use a potato masher and gently crush tomatoes (be careful, they spit when you smush them!)
Add chickpeas and 1 c. water, stir well and simmer for 30 minutes.
Taste, adjust seasonings, add more water if simmering longer, if not serve over rice (I had cous cous on hand, so I used that instead)
Serve with chopped cilantro.