Chole or Channa is a very common side dish for chappatis, puris and battooras . Here is my mother's chole masala recipe.
1 medium onion
3 tomatoes (make sure that tomatoes are double the onions when pureed)
or just use 1 tin 8 oz Hunts tomato sauce.
1 tsp chole massala (garam masala will do)
1/2 tsp dhaniya powder
1/4tsp jeera powder
1 inch ginger
1 clove garlic (optional)
green chillies 2
1 tsp chilli powder
salt to taste
1 tin garbanzo beans (chole) or 1 cup channa soaked overnight
1 tea bag (if using fresh channa)
Juice of 1/2 lime
chopped coriander leaves/ cilantro
chopped onions for garnishing
oil 4 tsp
-If you are using fresh channa, first soak it overnight. Pressure cook channa with a little salt and a tea bag (gives colour to channa). Drain out excess water , mash some of the pieces lightly with a spoon and keep aside. If you are using canned garbanzo beans, rinse and wash under tap water. Drain and slightly mash a few pieces and keep aside. By mashing them slightly, you can be sure that they absorb the masala while cooking.
-This step is optional - Take the onion, pierce a chopstick through it and char it on fire till soft and the outer peel is charred. Peel off the outer charred skin and keep the pulp aside (this gives a beautiful brown colour to the gravy)
-Grind onions, ginger, garlic(optional), green chillies to a fine paste. Next, grind the tomatoes (if you use fresh tomatoes) and keep aside. Add oil in kadai, add the onion paste and saute well till dry and oil separates. Add the pureed tomato/ hunts tomato sauce. Stir in garam masala/ chole masala, dhaniya powder, jeera powder, salt, chilli powder. Let it cook well till completely dry.
-Add channa and stir well. Add some water (about 1/2 cup) and let it boil well. Add more water if desired. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and chopped raw onions. Put off the heat and add the juice of 1/2 lime. Mix evenly and serve with hot puris/ rotis/ batura.