Chola Chana Masala is one of the most popular North Indian dishes that is prepared with chickpeas. It’s a weekend specialty in most households and called Chole Bhature when served with Bhature (fried puffed bread). Chana Masala is also a quintessential street food in Delhi and there are several food stalls in Delhi that is famous for just their special Chola Chana Masala / Chole Bhature. The combination of wholesome spiced chickpea stew with crispy hot puffed bread is a marriage made in heaven!
I will be sharing the recipe for Bhatura very soon with a video but for today it’s the comforting hearty Chola Chana Masala which also tastes amazing with Indian bread (roti/chapati) or even rice.
During our current situation of lockdown for Coronavirus, such dishes will come super handy. Cooking Chola Chana Masala in a Multipot be it Instapot or Mealthy or whatever brand you have is not only effortless but also quick.
Cooking Time for Chola Chana Masala in a Multipot:
I use Mealthy Multipot and it cooks in 30 minutes (if you soak the dried beans overnight) and takes 45 minutes (if you completely forget to soak the dried beans)
Spices that is used in Chola Masala :
Dried bay leaf
Dry mango powder ( This adds tang, you can substitute with lemon juice)
Garam Masala powder
What gives the gorgeous color to the Chola Chana Masala
There are two key ingredients that helps:
- Canned tomato puree
- Black tea bag or black tea leaf simmered in boiling water and then using that strained tea.
Can you use canned chickpea to prepare this dish?
YES! However, keep in mind that slow cooking dried chickpea in all those spices enhances the flavor as compared to using canned chickpea. You will definitely not need any Multipot if you are using canned chickpeas.
Chola Chana Masala tastes amazing when served immediately after preparing it but tastes equally good the next day. So, make a big batch and enjoy with your choice of bread or rice.
- Dried chickpea - 1 cup, soaked overnight
- Red onion - 1 and 1/2 medium size, thinly sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/2 inch ginger, finely chopped
- 1 red tomato, diced or sliced
- Tomato puree - 1 cup
- 1 tablepsoon oil
- 1 or 2 dried bay leaf
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 green cardamoms
- Few cloves
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mango powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
- 1 teaspoon black tea leaf
- 1 tablespoon ghee
- 2 or 3 fresh green chili
- ½ teaspoon asafoetida
- In a pan add 1 and ½ cup water and bring it to boil. Then add the tea leaves and let it simmer for 3 minutes. Strain the tea and leave it aside to be used later.
- Turn on the sauté mode in your Multipot and pour the oil followed by the whole spices (dry bay leaf, cinnamon stick, cardamoms and cloves). Stir it around until the flavor releases.
- Then scatter the garlic, ginger and onion. Sprinkle the turmeric, 1 teaspoon salt and the sugar. Stir it around for 1 minute.
- Sprinkle the ground spices (cumin powder, coriander powder, dry mango powder and chili powder) Stir around and cook for 3 minutes.
- Add the chopped tomato and let it cook for 2 minutes.
- Scatter the soaked chickpea (don’t add the water), followed by the strained tea, tomato puree, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ cup water. Give a stir.
- Cancel the sauté mode. Click the beans/chili mode and time for 30 minutes. If you are using un-soaked dried chickpeas then increase thetime to 45 minutes.
- After 30 minutes or 45 minutes (depending on weather you soaked or didn’t soak the chickpea), cancel the cooking time and let the steam release on its own. It should take about 5 minutes.
- Once you open the lid, turn the sauté mode on and sprinkle 1 teaspoon garam masala powder and cook for 2 minutes. Taste for salt and add any if needed.
- In a small pan pour the ghee and heat it up, then switch off the heat. Sprinkle the asafoetida and fresh green chili and let t sizzle for few seconds.
- Sprinkle the warm ghee with the green chili on the chola chana masala. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro and drizzle fresh lemon juice.