Chole is a spiced chickpea dish that is ubiquitous in India. They say there are as many chole recipes as there are North-Indian families. I’m not North Indian and I’ve been searching for a good chole recipe for a long time.
This variation of a recipe by “your food lab”- the Tasty videos of India (link below) comes very close to what I think are perfect chole. A trip to the Indian store for the spices is essential. I had to buy the Chana masala (I got the MDH brand).
Pressure cook- on high for 30 min
1 cup chickpeas soaked for 24 hours- drained
In a tea ball or cheesecloth – 1 tsp peppercorns, 3-4 cloves, 1-2 Black cardamon pods, 2 bay leaves, 1 inch cinnamon
2 tea bags
4 cloves garlic – crushed
½ cup onions- sliced
1 tsp ajwain (carom seeds)
1 tsp baking soda
Add 2 quarts of water
In a pan:
Melt 2-3 tbsp butter
Add 3 tbsp of Chana masala and 2 tbsp of cumin-coriander powder
Cook for 3 min or so
Add 1 can of tomatoes – puréed
1tbsp of ginger
Cook for 10 min or so
Add pressure cooked chickpeas with their water (removing the tea bags and the spice bouquet)
Cook for 20 minutes
Stir in 1 tsp of amchur powder (dried mango powder) and 1 tsp of garam masala and 1 tbsp of kasuri methi (crushed fenugreek)
Salt to taste – this recipe needs a lot of salt
Garnish: raw onions, chopped preserved lemon, slivers of garlic
Serve with roti or naan or rice or griddled multigrain pizza dough (store bought) which tastes a lot like naan except its whole grain.