Spicy Chickpeas with Ground Pomegranate Seeds

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Spicy Chickpeas with Ground Pomegranate Seeds

My regular readers will have noticed how much I enjoy cooking with chickpeas. I do believe these buttery soft beans are my favorite legume and honestly, I am rather lucky if I have enough left over after they are cooked and waiting to be included into the dish I am preparing. I just so love to nibble on these delightful garbanzos fresh out of the pot.

This is a recipe that I have adapted from a book containing a treasure trove of Indian recipes entitled 1,000 Indian Recipes by Neelam Batra that I mentioned in a previous post. I could not resist the idea of ground pomegranate seeds served along with chickpeas and such a tempting array of spices. If you are looking for a layer of taste sensation in one dish, you won't want to miss this one. Ms. Batra tells us this dish (Pindi Channae - Anardana) is essentially an answer to India's version of fast food. If only we could be so lucky here in North America! Would you prefer a Big Mac or Whopper, with some greasy fries, or this aromatic healthy meal that could be served over rice or with your favorite Indian flatbread?

So much to explore, so little time. I did change the recipe somewhat to suit my preferences, but I am indebted to Ms. Batra for the inspiration. If you have the time or inspiration, I encourage you to make your own freshly ground spice powders. They will keep in a sealed jar, in your cupboard, away from bright light, for a good few months. Dried pomegranate seed powder — or anardana — is readily obtained at an Indian grocery store.

Spicy Chickpeas with Ground Pomegranate SeedsSpicy Chickpeas with Ground Pomegranate Seeds
Recipe by
Adapted from 1,000 Indian Recipes
Cuisine: Indian
Published on November 9, 2010

Simple, tart, tangy and spicy Indian chickpea and tomato curry seasoned with dried pomegranate seed powder

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  • 1 1/4 cup dried chickpeas
  • 1inch fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 2 to 3 fresh green chilies, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed or finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon butter, ghee or oil
  • 1 teaspoon chat masala
  • 1 tablespoon anardana (ground dried pomegranate seeds)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon amchoor (dried mango) powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon black salt or sea salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
  • Rinse the chickpeas and soak in several inches of water for 8 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse, then transfer to a large saucepan and cover with fresh water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the chickpeas are buttery soft — 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Drain and set aside.

  • Mash the ginger, chilies and garlic together in a mortar and pestle to form a paste. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter, ghee or oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. When hot, add the ginger-chili-garlic mixture and stir for 5 minutes.

  • Add the chat masala, anardana, ground cumin, amchoor powder, garam masala, cayenne, coriander and salt, and stir for another 2 minutes. Pour in the water and cooked chickpeas, and simmer for another 10 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining teaspoon of butter, ghee or oil in a frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and stir for a few minutes until fragrant and the seeds have darkened a few shades. Add the green onions, tomatoes and parsley or cilantro, and cook for 10 minutes or until the tomatoes softened. Transfer to the saucepan with the chickpeas and simmer for another 10 minutes to blend the flavors.

  • Serve hot over a bed of fresh cooked white or brown rice.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Other spicy chickpea recipes from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen you are sure to enjoy:
Chickpea and Tomato Salad with Chat Masala
Chana Masala
Chickpeas and Paneer in a Spicy Creamy Cashew Gravy
Shredded Paneer with Tomatoes, Chilies, Mushrooms and Chickpeas

On the top of the reading stack: Quinoa 365: The Everyday Superfood by Patricia Green

Audio Accompaniment: CED CATHARSIS - Orange or Not


AJ said...

Curry looks yummy!!

Nithya said...

The addition of pomegranate seeds are super awesome :) got to try it out soon :)

sweet Artichoke said...

Sounds like a very flavourful dish! I like the little sourness brought by the addition of pomegranate and amchur powder...

Priya Suresh said...

Thats a delicious curry..

Turning the Clock Back said...

This looks really good! You should come link it up to my What's Cooking Wednesday linky at http://turning-the-clock-back.blogspot.com/2010/11/whats-cooking-wednesday-link-up-your_10.html

I will definitely stop by again for more recipe ideas!


tigerfish said...

Oh you are hosting MLLA this month too? I will send in an entry :)

I should start incorporating more chickpeas in my meal. I do like them but someone else at home does not like it :( ...right now, I have lentils right up my sleeve so once those get depleted, I will turn to chickpeas. And what a creative way to include pomegranate!

stephen said...

Holy YUM!

Susan said...

I love that sour, too! Really makes my mouth water to read through the recipe. So glad you are putting the cookbook to tasty and nourishing use.

Nice, nice addition to your MLLA round-up.