Channa Masala (without coconut)

Channa masala is a a tasty side dish which can be served along with chapathi / roti / phulka.  Channa masala / chole is a famous Indian side dish.  There are different versions of channa masala in India, with amritsari chole, kerala kadala curry and so on.  Usually I make kadala curry in Kerala style, which makes use of loads of coconut, but today, I am sharing a non-coconut version of kadala curry or channa.  I have made use of white channa / kabuli channa.  In this dish, I have made use of a basic onion tomato gravy.  Now to the recipe..



Ingredients required

Kabuli channa / white channa – 1 cup

onion  (small) – 1 (finely chopped)

red chilly powder  – 1 teaspoon

cumin powder  – 1/4 teaspoon

coriander powder   – 1 teaspoon

turmeric powder  – 1/4 teaspoon

garam masala – 1/4 teaspoon

channa masala powder – 1/2 teaspoon

salt – 1/2 teaspoon

water  – 4 cups

coriander leaves – few

for grinding 

oil  – 1 tablespoon

onion – 1 (large -roughly chopped)

tomato – 4 (medium sized )

garlic – 6 – 7

ginger – 1 inch piece

pepper  – 1/2 teaspoon

fennel seeds – 1 teaspoon

salt  – 1/4 teaspoon

for tempering

oil – 2 tablespoons

cardamom  – 2

cinnamon – 1/2 inch piece

bay leaf  – 1


1.  Soak channa overnight or for 8 hours.  Wash and drain the soaked water.  Add the soaked channa to pressure cooker, and add 2 cups of water.  Pressure cook it for 5 – 6 whistles or until channa turns soft.


2.  In another pan, heat oil.  Once the oil is hot enough, add ginger, and garlic and saute for few seconds.  Then add the roughly chopped onion, and saute till it turns translucent.


3.  Then add chopped tomato pieces, salt and saute till it turns mushy.  Finally add pepper corns and fennel seeds and mix well.  Allow it to cool.


4.  Then grind it into a smooth mixture.  Keep it aside.


5.  In another pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil, add cardamom, cinnamon and bay leaf.  Saute for a second.


6.  Then add finely chopped onion, and saute till it turns brownish in color.

7.  Next add the ground masala paste.  Add coriander powder, red chilly powder, turmeric powder, garam masala and channa masala powder and mix well.  Saute well till the raw smell leaves and oil starts separating from the sides.


8.  Mean while, take a few channa pieces out and crush it nicely (either using a mixer jar or with a potato masher. ) Grind it and keep aside.

9.  Once the raw smell leaves from the masala, add the cooked channa along with the cooked water and the ground channa.  Add 2 more cups of water.  Add required amount of salt.


10.  Bring it to boil and then simmer the flame, cover and cook for another 10 minutes.


11.  Finally garnish with coriander leaves and then turn off the stove.

12.  Channa masala is ready to be served.  Serve with chapathi, roti, phulka or with dosa.



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