Throughout most part of my life I have lived in North India where dishes like Kala Chana Curry was always very popular along with Black Chole and Punjabi Choley. The way I prepare Black Chole is also Satvik Ahaar as it doesn't have onion, garlic or even tomatoes. Kala Channa or Black Chikpeas are not only a good source of protein and also could be prepared as fulfilling dish easy to prepare. It's also a fact that Kala chana masala gravy could be had with Luchi, Bhatures, Peas Pulao or Chapatis. Because it has tomatoes in it, little sourness makes the dish very tasty. During my Delhi days during weekends we used to head towards to Sector 14 Om sweets shop to enjoy Kala Chana Curry with Peas Pulao. Even now we scout for street joints here and thankfully have found some nice places which serve delightful Kala Chana masala with Bhatures.
Serves: 4, Cooking time: 45-50 minutes
While Boiling Chana:
2 cups Kala chana (black chickpeas)
1" inch Cinnamon
2 Black cardamom
1 Bay leaf
Salt to taste
Baking Soda (small pinch)
1 tbsp combined of Ginger-garlic-green chilli paste
1/2 tsp Sugar
1-2 Green chili, chopped
2 medium sized Tomatoes
1 1/2 Coriander powder
1/2 Kashmiri Red Chilli powder
1/2 tsp Garam masala powder
2 tbsp Oil
Wash and soak kala chana in enough water for overnight. Add a pinch of baking soda to it. Drain out the water and transfer the cooked chana to a pressure cooker. Add 3 cups of water, salt, cardamom, bay leaf, cloves and cinnamon. Close lid and keep the flame on high till the pressure builds up, after that you can reduce the flame to low and cook for another 20-25 minutes till cooked and lightly soft. Separate the boiled chana and water with a help of big strainer. Keep aside.
Take a heavy bottom kadhai and heat 2 tbsp oil. Add sugar and when it leaves red color, add onions and fry till they become light brown. Add ginger-garlic paste and green chilies. Stir fry for a minute. If the masala is sticking to the bottom then add 1-2 tsp of kala chana water. Add coriander and red chilly powder and stir fry for a second.
Add the cooked chana and mix well. Next add tomatoes and fry till it leaves oil. Add Kala chana boiled water,now which you had saved and sprinkle some garam masala powder.
Pressure cook this for another 5-10 minutes, this will allow the spices to mix well and thicken the gravy. Allow it to cool. Once cooled, open the lid and add chopped coriander leaves. Transfer this gravy to serving bowl and serve hot with naan or chapati.