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Chana Masala - deliciousness from chickpeas

So, a couple of weeks ago I mentioned how I am working hard on making more things from scratch. I'm even doing the locavore thing at present, what with so much Jersey produce in season. Like tonight, for dinner, I made zucchini pancakes, and they were fabuloso. Only that's not the recipe I'm sharing with you because I've only made them once, and I kind of want to share recipes that I absolutely love and can sort of claim as my own by virtue of having made them many times.

Which is what brings me to today's recipe, which is for an Indian dish called "chana masala", where chana means "chickpeas" or, if you prefer (and I do not), "garbanzo beans". The thing is, I got my recipe from the marvelous book, which long-time readers may recall me reviewing back in 2011. I've made at least half a dozen recipes out of the cookbook, each one a treasure. ("Jimmy's pink cookies" really DO taste pink. And the lemon yogurt cake is so moist and lemony. And, and, and . . . ) But the very first one I decided to make back in the summer of 2011 was her chana masala, which I had never had before, but her description made it sound so magically good that I really wanted to try it.

It took a trip to several grocery stores, including (finally) the local Indian market, which is where I should have started when looking for some of the spices - they were the only place with green cardamom pods I could find locally - but it was totally worth it. And once you have the spices, you are pretty much set to make lots and lots of batches of chana masala, which is awesome.

I have made this recipe a bunch of times - I prefer the full-fat yogurt variant of the recipe to the one involving lemon juice - and my older daughter, Sara, and I like it a lot. (Neither Maggie nor my sweetheart are big chickpea fans. Yet.) I thought of sharing this one after it came up in conversation at Facebook last week with arialas. So here it is!

Only instead of giving you the recipe, I'm going to go ahead and give you the link to Molly Wizenberg's blog (she blogs at Orangette), where you can read her old (pre-cookbook) post about chana masala from when she was still dating a guy named Brandon, and wasn't yet married to him (and mother to a child as well as co-owner of a restaurant with him). It is charming, and gives you a bit of an idea what the insides of her cookbook, A Homemade Life, are like: part memoir, part food porn, plus excellent recipes.

Also? She has another cookbook coming out. Not until next May, but I am already salivating over it. For serious.

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 30th, 2013 03:16 am (UTC)
That is my go-to chana masala as well. So good. Though I like it with the yogurt AND the lemon juice!
Jul. 31st, 2013 02:58 pm (UTC)
I knew you'd like this recipe, since I remember you commenting about it before! It's just sooooo good!
(Deleted comment)
Jul. 31st, 2013 02:59 pm (UTC)
I have to replace my green cardamom pods, but when I do, I will bring you some of them and the other spices, so that you don't have to go finding them. (That way you can decide if you like the recipe without going too far out of pocket!)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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