4 garlic cloves
1 inch piece of peeled ginger
1 green thai chile
1 tsp salt
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tbl ghee or Pecan Oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp Nigella Sativa
1 onion, diced
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp Garam Masala
1 tsp Ground Turmeric
14-oz can peeled tomatoes
2 14-oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves plus more for serving
Lemon juice for serving

Chana Masala is a chickpea curry that’s a staple dish in Northern India. The magic in Chana Masala happens in the browning of the onions and the addition of Garam Masala. We love this hearty, aromatic dish on its own or with a bowl of steamed basmati rice. It’s hearty and brimming with complexity. It’s also one of the easiest Indian dishes you’ll make.


1.Combine garlic, ginger, chile, lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a mortar and pestle or in a small food processor and pound or process until the mixture is a paste. Set aside.
2.Heat oil or ghee in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the cumin seeds and nigella sativa - they will sputter for a few seconds and then become very aromatic. Add in the onions and baking soda. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions start to brown and stick to the pan - 3 to 4 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon water, scrape up browned bits from pan, and continue cooking. Repeat this process of allowing the onions to brown and stick (but not burn) and then releasing them with a bit of water until onions are a deep brown, about 10 minutes total.
3.Add the garlic paste and stir to combine. Add coriander, black pepper, turmeric and 1 1/2 tsp Garam Masala. Stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes and crush them using the back of a wooden spoon or a potato masher. Add drained, rinsed chickpeas, 1/2 cup water and 1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves (reserve some leaves for garnish.)
4.Bring to a simmer, cover with lid slightly ajar and reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid has reduced into a thick stew, about 30 minutes.
5.Stir in remaining 1/2 tsp Garam Masala and lemon juice. Taste and adjust with salt. Serve with rice, naan and more fresh cilantro.

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