Are you a fan of Channa Masala?I am. A huge one. Any restaurant you go to, you could ask for a vegan version and 99.99% of the time, it will be vegan. When one of my students ‘A’ mentioned that, her mum is of Punjabi heritage, I was like ‘I need Channa Masala recipe’. And her mum emailed me one. Her mum’s name is Geetali.K. She is such a sweetheart-I emailed her heaps of times and she got back to me instantly. If you happen to live in Sydney, she runs Indian Cooking classes at Macquarie Community College.
This is not a regular channa masala. This is super special. No garlic/tomatoes. Cooked with tamarind, it is one of those curries which will definitely stand out in the lot. This recipe has been passed over for generations and I am sure it will for many more. I have eaten a fair share of curries but nothing this unique.
- Dry Chickpeas-1/2 cup-soaked overnight with 3 cloves, 1 black cardamom, 2 dry chilies
- Large red onion-1-finely chopped
- Oil-1 tbsp+1.5 tsp
- To roast in a tsp of oil and grind in spice mill- (1 Tbsp coriander seeds, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 5 red chili, black pepper-10 nos, fenugreek seeds-1/4 tsp)-This will be your spice mix
- Garam masala-1 tsp
- Ginger-1 inch piece
- Cumin seeds-1 tsp
- Tamarind-2 Tbsp tightly packed soaked in 1.5 cups hot water.
- Chili powder (extra) – if needed
- Turmeric-1/2 tsp + 1/2 tsp
- Coriander leaves – a handful-finely chopped
- Juice from lemon juice and finely chopped onions- garnish
- In a pressure cooker/stock pot, boil chickpeas (with salt and turmeric-use 1/2 tsp here) until soft in 2 cups water. Drain and store this stock (you can use some in this curry [or] in any other soups)
- After they are done, take 1/4 cup chickpeas out-mash it well[or[chuck them in food processor-this is what adds a creamy texture to your curry. Add it back to your pressure cooker. Place this aside.
- Make the spice mix.
- Get your hands dirty and massage, squeeze the tamarind pulp, take the juices out and keep the pulp aside. You will need this for your second extract. Use 1/2 cup of drained water and add it to the pulp. Massage again and extract more juices. Discard the pulp.
- To a sauce pan, add a tbsp of oil, once hot, add onions and fry until golden brown.
- Add the spice mix fry for a minute until this awesome aroma fills the house 🙂
- Add tamarind extract, salt, rest of turmeric and let it boil for 12 mins on a medium heat.
- Do a taste check if you need more heat, throw some chili powder in.
- Add it to the stockpot/pressure cooker, cover and let it simmer for 8 mins on medium heat.
- If it is too thick, you can add the drained water and make it watery.
- Remove off heat and add coriander leaves
- Serve with finely chopped raw onions and lemon juice with any rice/flatbreads