Tamarind Chana Masala
How versatile are chickpeas?! You have to try this tamarind chana masala! How amazing do the colours look?
Yes, it’s been a while. Sorry! When i first started the ‘break’, it was because i wanted to focus on Ramadan. The end of Ramadan coincided with the kids breaking up for nursery. They have now been home a week and i haven’t really managed to sit down and write anything up. To be honest, last week was a really really hectic week and this week looks like it will be the same but i am hoping to get as many posts out as possible this week.
I feel like i can’t carry on with this post without talking about the news. There has been so much unrest around the world. I don’t quite know where to start. There is so much to say because so much has happened within the last month. Also, i find it shocking that in this day and age we are still fighting discrimination? That we are still having to point out that black lives matter as much as any other life? Why does that need to be said? Weren’t we celebrating Muhammad Ali not long ago? The murder of Philander Castille in Minnesota was a sad, sad day. I happen to know someone who lives around the corner from where it happened and the community there have come together and are united. I pray a day comes when all lives matter equally. Pray for the world.
Moving on to happier topics, as i have mentioned (a few too many times maybe!), there are so many names giving to this tamarind chickpea soup. I don’t think i even know all the names. My husband came up with one the other day, that escapes me now. Hmm will have to ask him to remind me later!
So of the names i do know, we have chana masala, chana batata, chana bateta, chana bataka, chat patti, choley. Yes that’s quite a few for one dish. There are as many variations to this recipe as there are names but this is my favourite way to make it. Mainly because it is the most simple method.
Tamarind chana masala is a deliciously tangy, sour traditional dish that is very often made during wedding weeks. Well it is for indians anyway. It is often topped with coriander, red onions, lemon and crispy crunchy sev.
This soup is fantastic for busy week nights and it is adaptable to your taste. For example, If you don’t like it tangy, you can reduce the tamarind. It is also sometimes made with jaggery, date pulp, coconut, green mango. This version is the most simple method and it isn’t to be quaffed at. Many, many people make it this way and cut corners where they need to!
Last week, my husbands cousin sent me a link to this anxiety summit. I was particularly interested in the relationship between diet and anxiety having suffered with it for so many years. More on that here. A lot of what they said resonated with me. Sometimes, i feel like there is so much conflicting information out there in food land that it can become confusing. Also i’m not convinced that one size fits all. I feel like there are some sweeping generalisations made about what we should and shouldn’t eat and these change as often as the wind. Then again, there seems to be an overwhelming increase in some illnesses and that has to come from somewhere right?
In the name of trying everything to aid overcoming anxiety (or helping to make it better), i am going gluten free for a little while! There were also symptoms i recognised, that were in line with the research presented in the summit that made me think. The headaches being the most prominent one. Nausea can be second. Over the last year, i have had sudden skin breakouts which has never happened before. I have felt exhausted ALL the time. A few other things too but lets move on..So the key bits of research suggested that things like anxiety, ADHD, social phobias can be reduced by one of four dietary options: gluten free, gluten free & dairy free, grain free & dairy free, traditional foods- spouting/fermenting, organic produce, grass fed / pastured animal protein.
I am actually starting a course soon which is all about a holistic approach. More on that soon!
By the way, I’m so excited to tell you that we will be at the London Halal Food Festival in August. Yay! We have been asked to be ambassadors alongside a few other great bloggers. We will be covering the event and writing about it on the blog. We have two pairs of tickets left to giveaway and competitions will be running over the next two weeks, so keep an eye on our page!
Anyhow, here is the recipe for that chickpea curry! Happy Monday 🙂
- 1 tbsp mustard seeds
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 6 fresh curry leaves
- 3 garlic cloves crushed
- 100g blended plum tomatoes from a tin
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric
- Salt to taste
- 2 tbsp tamarind paste
- 3 tbsp ketchup
- 2 400g tin chickpeas drained
- 1 300g tinned potatoes drained (Chop larger potatoes in half)
- In a dry non stick pan over a high heat, add the mustard seeds and when they begin to pop pour in the oil.
- Turn the heat down and add the curry leaves and garlic cloves, stirring continuously for 1 minute.
- Stir in the blended tomatoes, red chilli powder, turmeric and salt. Allow to cook out for 3 - 4 minutes.
- Mix in the tamarind and ketchup and allow to cook for 2 minutes.
- Stir in the chickpeas with half a coup of water and potatoes and allow to simmer for 10 - 15 minutes.
This is a very simplistic version of a chickpea curry and therefore there are no onions or jaggery or even dried chickpeas.
I didn't use tinned potatoes before but in the interest of providing a speedy recipe, i chose them here. My husbands aunt uses them and recommended them. Please give them a good wash before using!
The nutritional information is based on 6 servings.