Aloo Chole Recipe- Chickpeas in Coconut Gravy

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Chole Recipe - "A South Indian style preparation of chickpea, potatoes, tomatoes and coconuts"

I am sure, most of you must have heard of punjabi chole recipe.For those who haven't heard of it, it is chole(white chickpea) mixed in a tomato onion gravy along with freshly ground garam masala's (ground spices like cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and bayleaf). Punjabi chole is a North-Indian style preparation of chickpeas.

There is another famous recipe from Kerala called naadan kadala curry a South Indian style preparation of black chickpeas mixed in a masala gravy made out by  powdering coriander seeds, dry red chilies, coconuts, pepper and very small piece of cinnamon. 

So, here is a question."Can you  have a mix of both methods? Can you could take the masala flavors  of punjabi chole and add to it a twist of  south indian flavors?"

That is what we are going to do in today's  recipe and I am also going to show you how. 

Many people refer this recipe as south-indian chana masala. They also use a lot of different styles to make it.
I have found a few people, grind the coconuts into paste and directly add it along with the recipe.
I have also found a few frying the coconuts and powdering it and adding along with the masalas.

Personally, I have felt the latter method tastes much better. Also, it tastes a lot better when you make your own masala's. You get that restaurant style taste to your recipe. 

On the downside, this step may take an extra 30 min, and therefore many people think, it is tough and decide not to do it. 

But, here is my logic. If an extra 30 min, will give you a tastier dish, why not use it. That time is going to go anyway. So make good use of it. Maybe try this recipe out during your weekends, when you are in mood to cook.  

OK, So, shall we begin then? Ingredients list coming up..

Chole Recipe - Ingredients List

Here are the list of ingredients for this recipe. This list serves for 3 people.

For Masalas

  • Grated Coconuts - 1/2 cup
  • Coriander Seeds - 2 tbsp
  • Jeera/Cumin Seeds - 1 tbsp
  • Cinnamon - 1/2 slice
  • Cloves - 2
  • Rock Flower - 1 (optional)
  • Pepper - 10-15
  • Red Chilly - 4
  • Bay Leaf - 2

For Vegetables

  • Tomatoes - 3
  • Green Chily - 3
  • White Chickpea - 250 ml
  • Ginger - 1 slice

Chole Recipe - Preparation Steps

Part I - Prepare the Masala's

1. Fry the grated coconuts, till it turns golden brown and keep them aside.

2. In the same pan, dry roast 2tbsp coriander seeds, 4 dry red chilies, 2 cloves, 1/2 slice cinnamon, 10-15 pepper, 2 bayleaf and rock flower.

3. In a mixer, mix all the ingredients together and powder it well.

Part II - Cook the vegetables

4.In a pressure cooker, add the soaked chickpeas and cook it for 18-20 cooker whistles.Keep the stock water aside. 

Note:

You can either soak the chickpeas in water overnight which takes about 8 hrs. Or you can add boiled water to chickpeas and let it cook in it. This process takes only 4 hrs.

5. Cut potato into medium chunks. In a vessel, add 2 cups of water, 1/4 tbsp of salt, 1/4 tbsp of turmeric powder and cook it until it is soft.

Note:

I took about 10 minutes to boil the potatoes. To see if potatoes are cooked, I use a fork and poke it. If the fork smoothly goes inside, your potatoes are ready.

Part III - Making the gravy

6. Slit 3 green chilies and chop ginger into small slices.Also chop 3 tomatoes and keep them aside.

7. In  a pan heat 4-5 tbsp of oil. As the oil gets heated, add in 1 tbsp cumin seeds and chopped ginger.

8. Add in the chopped tomatoes, 1/2 tbsp of turmeric powder and the powdered masalas and stir well.Let it cook in closed lid.Keep medium flame as you do.

9. The tomatoes would have lost its moisture and must have become a nice paste.

Note:

Once the tomatoes have become cooked, the oil leaves the sides of the pan. So, keep a medium flame and be little patient.

10. Add the cooked potatoes into the mix. Add about 2 cups of stock water of chole and let it boil for about 10 minutes.

11. As the water starts boiling, add in the cooked chickpeas and the green chilies into the mix. Let it boil for another 5 minutes.

Note:

The more you boil, the more the masala's settle down, and the better it tastes.

12. Once the mix has thickened considerably, garnish the mix with chopped coriander leaves.Your chole recipe is ready to be served. 

Note:

For this chole recipe, I haven't used any onion or garlic as I wont be using them for a few months from now. But, if you are someone who likes to add them into your dish, dice 1 onion and 5-6 garlic slices and fry it in oil and then add it to your recipe. It will be tasty.

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