November 30, 2011

...missing snow and {Recipe} Chana Masala

The first fall of snow is not only an event, it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of a world and wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment then where is it to be found?

~ J. B. Priestley

It was New Year's Eve of year 2006, when I first experienced snow.

It was elusive.  It was fascinating.

I still remember, standing near the the window just watching in awe tiny speckles of icy dust form a thick layer all around our house. The place where I studied my Masters, had plenty of snowfall, all winter - starting from October to April. From the very next year, I started to make my own snowman. It was quite exciting to build one along with my roomies, spruce him up which whatever was available at that time wearing our gloves & mittens. It kind of became a tradition until I moved out from east coast to California in summer of 2010.

You all might be wondering why am I suddenly talking about snow today. You see, Mr.TH is out of town on a business trip and Bangalore weather is not helping me cope with living and cooking alone. So, I sat down to browse through my archives and above were few of the pictures, I stumbled upon. The photography bug didn't bite me until recently, hence the pics are very normal-looking, but they still have lots of memories attached to them. :-)

Cold waves are slowly seeping into our part of the world. Hence, today I have got a classic recipe, which warm you up instantly, inside out. Have you ever been one of them who wolf down piping hot chole-paratha with a side of cut onions & lemon slice at many dhabas on the road-side. I sure am a great fan of them. Go grab a can of chickpeas (or) soak some dry ones immediately as we are making some Chana Masala today! :-)

Chana Masala (Chickpea Curry)


2 cups of cooked chickpeas (Click here to know how to cook dry chickpeas) (or) 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed
1 medium onion, thinly sliced + more for garnishing
1 medium sized tomato, chopped
1/2 tbsp chole masala. (I used Everest brand)
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
salt - to taste
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
1 tbsp oil
fresh cilantro + lemon slices for garnishing


1. Grind about 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas into fine paste. Keep aside.

2. Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. Once they start to splutter, add ginger garlic paste. Sauté for few second and then add onions. Cook them for 4-5 mins on low-medium heat until they turn translucent. Add tomatoes now and cook until mushy. Press the onion-tomato mixture with the back of the spatula.

3. Now add chickpea paste, chickpeas to this tomato-ey sauce. Mix.

4. Season with salt, turmeric, red chilli powder and chole masala. Add about 1-2 cups of water. Stir everything together.

5. On a low heat, simmer the curry for about 15-20 minutes, mixing it for every 5 minutes so that it doesn't stick at the bottom. Adjust the seasoning, if required. Turn off the heat.

6. You can add cilantro and/or lime juice (or) serve them on the side as a garnish along with cut onions. Serve with hot rotis (or any kind of bread). It serves well with rice too.

[Update] - Sending this recipe to My Legume Love Affair # 42, this month guest hosted by Kiran, originally conceptualized by lovely Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook.

until next time,

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  1. Lovely Pics Siri .. This post reminds me of that moment when I first saw Snow here .. It is indeed Lovely and Charismatic ...

  2. Snow is always so magical and mesmerizing! I'll send you pics, if at all it snows here this year :)

  3. love this post - the pics, the writing, everything about it! :)

  4. Anu - That is nice Anu. Doesn't the addition of chickpea paste make it more gravy-like..My mum taught me that trick :-)

    Nupur - I think the first snow is like first love. can never forget about it ;-)

    Manju - Wow, I would love to have the snow pics Manju. will be waiting for them..

    Nags - Thanks babes.

  5. Lovely pics.. even the snowman :)
    Chana Masala looks delicious.. I never added chickpea paste.. thats a nice idea to make it more gravy like.. I must really try this tip.

  6. Snow is always special, esp the first snow. Everybody turns into a child when they witness snow. Cute snowman siri. Channa masala is so hearty at any time esp with rotis n naan.

  7. Lovely snowman pics. Love the chana masala too. Specially the trick of grinding the chana will give a nice thick gravy. Think i will use the same from now on to thicken the gravy. Thanks


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