Chole - Spicy Chickpeas (Serves 4-6)

Served November 18, 2007. Source: "Caliente Cafe - Vegetarian Recipes from New Mexico" by Catherine Williamson.

  • 2 TBL olive oil

  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped

  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped

  • 2 tsp lime juice

  • 2 tsp tomato paste

  • 3 cloves garlic minced

  • 1/2 bunch cilantro leaves

  • 1/2 cup water

  • 1 inch ginger root, crushed

  • 1 tsp ground coriander

  • 2 TBL butter/ghee or another oil you like

  • 1 tsp ground cumin

  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

  • 1/4 tsp ground clove

  • 6 cups cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

  • Additional water while cooking

  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more if you like hot)

  • 1 tsp salt (or 1 tsp Bragg Liquid Aminos)

Optional Garnish (but well worth it) - Mix together the following:

  • 2 cups plain yogurt

  • 1/2 bunch chopped cilantro

  • 1 medium onion finely chopped.

  1. Saute onions 4 minutes over medium-high heat. Add garlic and ginger then saute for another 3 minutes (onions may turn slightly brown). Then add to the pan all of the other spices except the turmeric. Allow spices to cook for another minute while stirring. Then add the tomatoes, lime juice, and cilantro. Cover the pan and lower heat to simmer; stir occasionally. When tomatoes are soft, transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor, add 1/2 cup of water and puree until smooth. Set aside.

  2. Heat the butter/ghee in a soup pot over medium heat, place the puree mixture from Step (1) into the pot along with the turmeric. Cook this mixture for 2 minutes then add 2 cups of the chickpeas and cook for another 2 minutes. Now transfer this mixture into the food processor and puree until smooth.

  3. Final step is to combine the puree mixture with the remaining 4 cups of chickpeas in the soup pot. Add enough water to get the consistency you wish, anywhere from soup-like to a thick gravy (my favorite way). Cover pot and bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes. Serve hot; the optional garnish is a wonderful addition to this dish.

This will freeze very well, and the flavors develop better after sitting overnight in the refrigerator.

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