The Most Comforting Quarantine Meal

Hey friends. Life is weird right now. I’m not going to spend a whole lot of time talking about it, because that’s all anyone’s talking about and at a certain point it’s just.. not helpful anymore. I wanted to share with you a meal that’s long been in my dinner rotation, but is a real favorite right now. It uses almost entirely pantry basics, most of which are non-perishables anyways, and comes together in under half an hour. Once you’re made it a few times, you won’t need the recipe! It’s also vegan and gluten-free, if you’re into that! Enjoy, and stay well.

Simple Chana Masala, loosely inspired by the chana masala in Angela Liddon’s cookbook

Serves 3-4 and is excellent as leftovers

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds (most grocery stores have these in bulk)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (depending on how spicy you like it)
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala (again, most grocery stores have in bulk)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (28-ounce) can chickpeas/garbanzos
  • 1 tablespoon, give or take, lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (I love using these to cut down on prep time)
  • Cooked rice for serving (optional, I often eat it on its own)

 

  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat for about a minute. Add the cumin seeds and keep stirring them continuously while they toast in the oil. They can burn quickly, so feel free to turn the heat down to low if necessary.
  2. Turn the heat back up to medium and stir in the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook until glosssy and translucent. Stir in the spices and salt (your kitchen’s about to smell INCREDIBLE) and cook for 2-3 minutes. If your pot gets sticky with the spices, toss in about a 1/4 cup of water to deglaze it.
  3. Add the tomatoes with their juices and stir well. Let cook for a minute or two.
  4. Raise the heat to medium-high and add the chickpeas. Bring everything to a simmer and cook for at least 10 minutes, but the longer the better. The flavors really start to meld beautifully around the 15 minute mark.
  5. Right before serving, stir in the cilantro and lemon juice. Serve over rice if you want, or don’t!

What have you been making while restaurants are closed? Let me know in the comments below! xoxo

 

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