Chhole is a variety of chickpea also known as chana or kala chana. Kala chana is the black chickpea and is a rich source of iron and minerals.
I love black chana and was looking to cook it in a different way when hubby suggested that I cook it Punjabi style. You may wonder what’s so different from the Punjabi style to South Indian style and the big difference is the Amchur (mango powder) and cumin seeds. I would say mainly amchur, cos in south Indian cookery, amchur is rarely used. Amchur is to give the food the oomph and tangy flavour. Lime juice would work as well, but amchur is better 😄… ha ha ha.
This black chana is one of my favourites and goes so well with rice, chappati and even puttu!
- Dried black chana – 1.5 cups
- Onion – 2 medium, chopped
- Green chilli – 3, chopped
- Garlic – 1/2 tsp
- Ginger – 3 inches, thinly sliced
- Tomato – 2 large, chopped
- Cumin seeds – 2 tbsp
- Cumin powder – 1 tsp
- Coriander powder – 1 tbsp
- Kashmiri chilli powder – 2 tsp
- Amchur (mango powder) – 1 tbsp
- Coriander leaves for garnishing
- Soak the dried black chana in water overnight or for 2 days, changing the water daily.
- Wash thoroughly and place the chana in a saucepan with water and bring to a boil. This method may take about 2 hrs till you get tender chana. Alternatively, you may cook them in a pressure cooker.
- In a medium sized wok, heat some oil and saute the chopped onion.
- Once translucent, add the chopped garlic, sliced ginger and the chopped green chilli and fry well till the onions start turning brown.
- Next add the amchur, Kashmiri chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and couple of spoons of the stock from the chana and stir well.
- Now add the tomatoes and cook till pulpy.
- Add the boiled black chana together with the stock, salt and stir well.
- Cover and let it cook for about 5 mins.
- Take about 3-4 tbsp of the chana and grind them to a paste and pour over the cooked chana. This is to thicken the gravy.
- Stir well and adjust taste accordingly and garish with coriander leaves.