I think that subconsciously I’ve been getting you ready for this: a heavily, intricately spiced dish that will transport you to the markets of Mumbai and the streets of New Delhi.
Chana Masala is a very traditional Indian dish, mainly in the Northern region – and one that I’ve completely meddled and messed with by adding lentils. [The classical version contains only chickpeas]. If you’d like you can go back to a more common version, by using two cans of chickpeas instead of one of each.
This dish has quite a spicy kick, so I recommend pairing it with something creamy like yogurt or sour cream – or even a dollop of mayonnaise to smooth things over.
Best of all, if you used canned beans this dish comes together in no time – perfect for a quick, hearty supper.
Chana Masala with Lentils – Feeds 4-6
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced or finely diced
2 teaspoons ground ginger
½ teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
½ teaspoon cayenne powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon curry powder
15-ounce can chopped tomatoes or 2 cups – well diced
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 15-ounce can lentils, rinsed and drained
2/3 cup water
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the diced onion, garlic and ginger and sautee until browned, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the chili powder, cumin, cayenne, turmeric, paprika and curry powder and stir until combined. Cook another 5 minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes and stir to combine.
Add in the chickpeas and lentils, plus the water, and mix until combined.
Bring the mixture to a boil, then let simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
Serve over rice if desired.