So here goes......
This is a recipe for a chunky chickpea curry I made last night. It's chunky because the chili and ginger are in quite big bits so you get bursts of their intense flavours over the background taste of the spices. My aim with the recipe was to slowly cook the onions and allow their sweetness to build. It seemed to work (even though I did cheat a wee bit and add a sprinkle of brown sugar to them). The combination of the sweet onions and the heat from the chili was mouthwatering. I guess you need to like chillies though.
2 medium onions
1.5 cm cube of ginger (peeled)
2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1/2 large red chili (roughly chopped)
2 tsp. coriander seeds
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 can of chickpeas
3 tomatoes from a tin (chopped)
1/2 tsp. brown sugar (optional)
pinch of salt
3 tbsp. sunflower oil
3 tbsp. coriander leaves (chopped)
black pepper to taste
1. Peel the onions, cut in half and then slice.
2. Heat a small pan and dry roast the coriander seeds.
3. Roughly crush in a mortar and pestle.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the cumin seeds taking care not to burn them.
5. Heat a large heavy bottomed pan on a medium - high setting and add the oil.
6. When the oil is hot add all the spices and allow to sizzle for 1 min.
7. Add the onions and fry for 1 -2 mins while stirring occasionally so they don't stick.
8. Turn down the heat to low and continue to cook for 10 -15 mins. Sprinkle on the sugar if desired.
9. Thinly slice the ginger and then cut the slices into quarters. .Then add to the onions with the chili and garlic. Cook for a further 2 mins then turn the heat up to medium-high again.
10. Add the chickpeas and cook for 5 mins before adding the chopped tomatoes.
11. Add a splash or two of water to loosen off the mix. It should not be too dry.
12. Turn down the heat a bit and simmer for 10 mins. You can mash a bit of the chickpeas up with a spoon as the mushed chickpeas give a creamy texture to the curry.
13. Add the lemon juice and chopped coriander. Simmer for 1 min.
14. Serve it up with a naan bread.
This is a really versatile dish as it's as good hot as it is cold. It can be eaten on its own as a main course or as a side dish with another curry. If you don't like hot curries add a bit less chili powder and leave out the chopped chilies. Personally, I like the heat level in the standard recipe and the key is to have patience when cooking the onions to allow their sweetness to come out.
I tried this last night with a really cheap bottle of tesco rose wine that I won in a horse race charity event. It was surprisingly good, raspberry fruits and bursting with sunshine. I could almost imagine myself being in India !