Spicy Chickpeas


Spicy Chickpeas


  • 5 tb vegetable oil
  • 2 md onions, peeled and minced
  • 8 garlic cloves peeled and minced
  • 1 tb ground coriander seeds
  • 2 ts ground cumin seeds
  • 1/4 ts ground cayenne pepper or more
  • 1 t ground turmeric
  • 6 tb red-ripe tomatoes (finely chopped, skinned) fresh or canned
  • 40 ounces canned chickpeas or 4 1/2 c home-cooked chickpeas
  • 2 ts ground roasted cumin seeds
  • 1 tb ground amchoor (opt.) OR
  • 1 sm -lime (juice & pulp only)
  • 2 ts kashmiri red pepper
  • 1 t garam masala
  • 1/2 ts salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tb lemon juice (or more)
  • 1 fresh hot green chili minced
  • 2 ts fresh ginger (very finely grated)


This dish, a staple street food of the bazaars of Old Delhi, is wonderfully tart and hot. It requires two similar spice blends, one added to the browned onions and garlic, the other toward the end of the cooking time. Amchoor (powdered green mango) lends a haunting sourness. If you can't find this ingredient, substitute the juice and pulp of a small lime (the dish is also delicious without either). You may use Hungarian paprika as a substitute for Kashmiri red pepper; either will give color but no heat. These spicy chickpeas can be made up to two days ahead of time. In fact, their flavor improves if they are left, refrigerated, for at least 24 hours. DIRECTIONS: Heat the oil in a wide pot over a medium flame. When hot, put in the minced onions and garlic. Stir and fry until the mixture is a rich medium brown shade. Turn heat to medium low and add the coriander, cumin, (NOT the roasted cumin), cayenne, and turmeric. Stir for a few seconds. Now put in the finely chopped tomatoes. Stir for a few seconds. Now put in the finely chopped tomatoes. Stir and fry until the tomatoes are well amalgamated with the spice mixture and brown lightly. Add the drained chickpeas and 1 cup water. Stir. Add the ground roasted cumin, amchoor, red pepper, garam masala, salt, and lemon juice. Stir again. Cover, turn heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove cover and add the minced green chili and grated ginger. Stir and cook, uncovered, for another 30 seconds.

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