To make thick gravy, the recipe calls out for grinding some onions and tomatoes along with some coriander leaves, and mashing a few chana. The recipe is very much recommended
Here is what you will need.
1 Cup Chole Chana (Garbanzo beans)
2 Medium onions (I used yellow, because that’s what had at home)
2 medium or 3 small Roma tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
½ Teaspoon Ginger Paste or grated
1-1/2 Tbsp Coriander leaves (Cilantro)
½ inch stick of cinnamon
1/8th teaspoon black pepper powder (or per taste)
1 Teaspoon Red Chili powder (or to taste)-
Salt to taste
1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric powder (optional)
Juice of a ½ lemon
1 Dipping tea bag or 1 Tbsp of loose tea leaves
2 Bay Leaves
1 tbsp Ghee/butter or Oil
½ Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
1 green chili, split
1/4th teaspoon Garam Masala (I used Badshah Rajwadi garam masala)
1/4th teaspoon asafoetida
Wash chana (garbanzo beans) and add 3 cups of water. Soak overnight or atleast for 7 hours. Drain and remove most of the water keeping about half a cup of water with the chana. Save the drained water for making gravy. If you are using loose tea laves, tie them in a muslin cloth, and add to the chana, otherwise add a tea bag, and then add the bay leaves. Pressure cook until done (for 5-6 whistles), and let it cool completely.
While the chana is getting ready, cut an onion and a tomato in big pieces and put them in a mixer grinder. Add 1 Tbsp of coriander leaves, add some of the drained water if required and grind into a thick paste.. Keep aside.
Finely chop the remaining onion and tomatoes. Heat ½ tbsp ghee in a pan, when hot, add the cumin seeds. When the seed start to splutter, add the onion, add some salt to speed up the cooking process. Add half the cinnamon stick and a clove. Cook uncovered at low-medium flame until the onion starts turning transparent. Now add the tomatoes, ginger and garlic. Continue cooking at low-medium flame, stirring occasionally. Once cooked, mash them in the cooking pan. (this is optional…I did this to get a consistent texture). Add the drained water to get the consistency of the gravy you want. ( I didn’t add any)
Add the ground onion tomato paste to the pan. Discard the tea bag or muslin cloth, mash 1 tbsp of the cooked chana and add to the pan. Now add the chili powder, salt, garam masala, black pepper powder and turmeric powder to the pan. Cook uncovered at medium high heat. I used a splatter proof net to cover the pan, to avoid any mess. Cook until the gravy starts to thicken and the oil starts separating on sides. Stir occasionally for uniform cooking.
Now add the chana and cook for 5-7 minutes and take off the heat.
Just before serving, heat the remaining ghee in a small pan. Add the remaining cinnamon stick, clove and the split green chili. Cook for 1-2 minutes at high heat. Take off the heat and immediately add asafoetida and the remaining chopped coriander leaves. Add to the chana. Add the lemon juice and serve hot with naan, paratha or rice.
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