How to Prepare Delicious Curried Chickpeas
Curried chickpeas is a healthy, nutritious, versatile, and easy-to-make dish. In this article, we'll show you how to prepare it!
Curried chickpeas, or chana masala, is a typical Indian dish prepared with chickpeas and a mixture of spices.
It’s a good choice for family or friend gatherings, as it’s usually eaten as an appetizer with croutons or vegetable crudités. Furthermore, you can combine it with rice to make a complete and nutritious dish.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the nutritional value of this dish and how to make it.
The nutritional value of chickpeas
Chickpeas are a legume native to Turkey. Currently, there are different varieties of chickpeas depending on the geographical location where they’re cultivated. They’re generally larger in South America and smaller and with a milkier color in Europe and Asia.
Chickpeas are very interesting from a nutritional standpoint because they contain many vitamins and minerals. Also, they’re an important source of carbohydrates (25 g per 100 g of chickpeas) and protein (10 g per 100 g of chickpeas). They’re also rich in fiber and contain low amounts of fat.
Regarding the vitamins and minerals chickpeas contain, they’re rich in vitamins A, B, C, and E, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and zinc.
The health benefits of chickpeas
Chickpeas have a high nutritional value. They’re a source of high biological value proteins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
As we explained in the previous section, chickpeas have a very healthy nutritional profile, which is why they have numerous health benefits:
- Blood pressure regulation. Chickpeas promote diuresis (urine excretion), which is beneficial in cases of hypertension and kidney stones. In addition, potassium has vasodilating effects.
- Chickpeas help keep the heart-healthy. Their high fiber content helps regulate blood cholesterol levels.
- Chickpeas regulate bowel function, fight constipation, and promote intestinal flora.
- They contain B vitamins and minerals (magnesium, phosphorus) that are essential for muscle contraction and proper nervous system functioning.
- Their high content of vitamin K, phosphate, iron, calcium, and magnesium contribute to the formation and maintenance of the bone structure.
This article may interest you: What Kinds of Nutrients Can You Get from Legumes?
Curried chickpeas recipe
You can use previously cooked and prepared ingredients or make them on your own. Serve with rice for a more nutritious (and filling) result.
Curried chickpeas is a relatively easy and quick to prepare recipe if you use previously cooked vegetables and pre-packaged vegetable broth. Below, we’ll show you how to make this recipe step-by-step. After the recipe, we’ll include a brief explanation on how to prepare a homemade vegetable broth, if you prefer to make it yourself.
Ingredients (for four servings)
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 onion
- 1 tablespoon of ginger powder
- 2 tablespoons of curry powder
- A pinch of cayenne pepper (to taste)
- 1/2 a teaspoon of cumin
- 100 grams of spinach
- 70 grams of leek
- 200 grams of cooked chickpeas
- First, add the extra virgin olive oil to a pan at medium heat.
- Then, peel and cut all the vegetables except the spinach and add them to the pot, along with the cumin, ginger powder, curry powder, and cayenne pepper. Cook for about 10-12 minutes or until the onion turns transparent.
- Add the pre-packaged or homemade vegetable broth and the cooked chickpeas. Boil for 25 minutes to half an hour.
- Finally, lower the heat, add the spinach, and stir well.
- Add salt and pepper to taste. Your curried chickpeas are now ready to serve!
If you prefer to make the vegetable broth yourself, follow these steps:
- Put a pot with extra virgin olive oil to heat and add previously peeled onions cut into julienne strips.
- When ready, add whatever vegetables you have in your fridge (previously peeled and chopped). Cook for 12 minutes or until they turn golden brown.
- Add enough water to the pot to cover all the vegetables and bring the preparation to a boil.
- Let it boil for a couple of hours or until the vegetables become tender.
- Remove from heat and strain the broth with a colander.
This is a very versatile basic recipe, as it allows you to prepare more elaborate dishes. Also, you can simply add noodles to turn it into a vegetable soup!