Two Heads of Lettuce

Simple recipes for vegetarian potlucks. Would you like to join the Two Heads of Lettuce team? Contact twoheadsoflettuce at gmail dot com.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

A Simple Chana Masala

Americanized Chana Masala (Dairy)
I learned this recipe from my friend Rajiv Kumar when we were college housemates. It is quick to prepare, healthy, and highly scalable. I generally serve it with rice which can be revived by microwaving with water. Below are my spice choices but depending on tastes there is room for liberal adaptation. It is similar to traditional chana masala though this recipe is easier to prepare and perhaps slightly less authentic. You can double/triple/quadruple the recipe as you wish, just make sure you have enough room in your pots.
2 medium onions, cut into long slivers
oil for sauteing
1 30 oz. can chickpeas, rinsed
1 30 oz can diced tomatoes, or use fresh tomatoes
2 oz. heavy cream (if unavailable you can substitute unsweetened whipping cream)
pepper
1/2 t salt
1 t coriander
1/4 tumeric
1 t cumin
4 dashes dried chili pepper
1 t garam masala seasoning
Slice onions into long slivers. In large fry pan,
saute onions in oil.
Add 1 rinsed can of chick peas (30oz +/-) and 1 can of diced tomatoes (30oz +/-) or use fresh tomatoes.
Add roughly two oz of heavy cream.
Season with pepper, salt, corriander, tumeric, cumin, dried chili pepper and garam masala powder to taste.
Serve with rice.

10 Comments:

At 4:21 PM, June 04, 2006, Blogger BZ said...

Sounds great! I'm totally making this at the next opportunity. What's garam masala, where do I get it, and what do I substitute if I can't find it?

 
At 6:25 PM, June 04, 2006, Blogger ZT said...

garam masala is rather like a south asian allspice. the kind i have in front of me contains coriander, chilli, cumin, clove, cinamon, dry mango, salt, badlyan, mace, fennel seeds, black pepper, taj patta, and clove leaves. i suspect the ingredients and rations vary company to company. i purchased this 14oz bag at a Super G (Giant) supermarket for about $3.50. it will generally be in the international food section of a large market. my experience is that in NYC you may not find it there, due to the smaller food markets. it is very common in indian cooking and would be in just about any indian or other south asian gorcery. it is a good thing to have if you ever make curried vegis.

if you don't see it in a convenient shop then add slightly more cumin/coriander/chilli, and a pinch of cinamon.

 
At 12:34 AM, June 19, 2006, Blogger BZ said...

Thanks! I made a triple recipe of this for KZ on Friday, and it went over very well.

 
At 12:37 AM, June 19, 2006, Anonymous EAR said...

BZ got mad compliments on the chana masala!

 
At 10:31 AM, July 05, 2006, Blogger ZT said...

fantastic!

 
At 1:22 PM, August 14, 2006, Anonymous charley said...

allspice is not a mixture of spices but a single spice similar in taste to nutmeg, clove, and mace

 
At 11:18 PM, November 27, 2006, Anonymous andy said...

BZ and I have made this many times now, and it is surely a staple of our kitchen. Kudos to ZT for bringing this recipe to my world!

 
At 5:43 PM, August 01, 2007, Blogger ZT said...

good point charley. thanks for the clarification! perhaps a better analogy would be "italian seasoning".

 
At 2:26 PM, September 12, 2007, Blogger Ian Thal said...

Another good analogy for garam masala would be th mixture used in some Chinese cuisine: "Five-spice powder."

 
At 9:09 PM, April 26, 2017, Anonymous EAR said...

Chiming in from across the ages at 11 years later (the gemara of chana masala, anyone?) to agree with ZT that this is indeed "highly scalable." It's been the erev Shabbat entree at DC Jeremiah Fellowship retreats for the last 8 years, and each year the number of participants is different. Thanks, ZT! (And I am dying to know if anyone is still getting emails when there are new comments on this page.)

 

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