Cheap-O Chana Masala


Our love affair with rice and beans continues. This is easy peasy and oh so authentic! This dish is the ultimate aroma therapy in any office environment. Go ahead. Heat it up in the communal floor microwave and watch your coworkers lose it (in a good way).

And Cheap-O, too! Did someone say cheap? Yes! This is inexpensive and delicious. The pantry items used will take you through many remakes of this classic dish. Look how much of the spices you actually use. They will easily make a good six months of meals.

A luxury non pantry item could be cilantro:


The amchur, or mango powder, gives it the fresh note irregardless. So aside from being  pretty, the green leafy isn’t really necessary.

1 can garbanzo (chickpeas) beans

1 big onion very finely chopped

1 inch piece of ginger grated

1 clove garlic (oh, come on, use more!)

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp amchur powder (available in Indian/Asian grocers)

1/2 tsp garam masala

2 Tbs oil

Sea salt to taste

Heat oil in a frying pan. Add chopped onions and fry until golden brown. Add all the spices (except amchur (mango powder)), crushed garlic (smash with a sturdy knife or use a microplane) and grated ginger (we love the jarred, easy to use – 1″ = 1 Tbs) to it.

Fry for about two-three minutes. Add garbanzo beans, salt, and mango powder. Add about 1/2 cup of water and cook on low heat for about 15 minutes. This will give some time for garbanzo beans to absorb all the spices. Eat hot with basmati ride and spicy naan.

From our friend at Please Don’t Feed the Bears.