Authentic Amritsari chole masala recipe straight from its source. Two things distinguish Amritsari chole from regular chickpea curry - tea bags & pomegranate seeds. Find out in this easy-to-follow recipe.
Course: Main Course
2cupsdried chickpeas,soaked overnight or 6-8 hours
2black tea bags,regular black tea or use English breakfast
In a pressure cooker, heat 1 tbsp oil. Add the drained chickpeas, 6 cups of water, cinnamon stick, bayleaf, tea bags, 1 tsp turmeric powder and salt. Pressure cook the chickpeas for 4-5 whistles.
Remove from heat and open the pressure cooker only when all the steam has escaped on its own. Discard the bayleaf, cinnamon stick and tea bags.
While the chickpeas are cooking, start making the gravy in another pan.
Heat the remaining 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot add asafoetida and cumin seeds.
When the seeds start to sputter, add green chillies, ginger and garlic. Sauté for a minute, to flavour the oil.
Add the chopped onions. Sauté for 4-5 minutes, till the onions start to turn brown. Add the puréed tomatoes, salt, sugar, all the spices and pomegranate seeds water. Mix well and cook covered for 5 minutes.
Add the cooked chickpeas along with the water they are cooked in to the gravy and simmer on low for 15 minutes till the gravy is thick.
Garnish with fresh coriander and julienned ginger. Amritsari chole go best with kulcha or bhature but you can serve them with any of the flat Indian breads or basmati rice.
*For regular North Indian cooking, I use sunflower oil; you can use other vegetable cooking oils like canola, olive pomace etc. But avoid using stronger oils like coconut, mustard or sesame oil for this recipe.
You can make your own tea bags by tying 1 tsp loose tea leaves in a muslin cloth. If you use canned chickpeas, then you won’t get the deep brown colour that comes from boiling the chickpeas with tea leaves.
Try to use fresh homemade garam masala as it adds a nice aroma to the dish. If you don't have garam masala, you can also add some curry power or chana masala.