Ever since the new Indian restaurant opened down the street, I’ve been an Indian food junkie. I wasn’t entirely new to Indian food; we’ve had it when traveling, but my experience was spotty at best. Slowly, I’ve been working my way through the menu and hitting upon some favorites. Among them, Chana Masala. I recently made it at home in the crock pot and it’s super-easy. Because the main protein in the dish is chickpeas, it’s also frugal –and healthy, too. Definitely a win-win!
Frugal Tips: Indian spices are not always cheap, but they’re necessary for authentic flavors in Indian cookery. Think of them as an investment in frugal cooking. Over time, the money you save cooking Indian food at home (which is pretty frugal) will more than make up for the initial financial outlay.
- 4 C. water
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
- 1 6-oz. can tomato paste
- ⅓ C. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tsp. garam masala
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. cumin
- ½ tsp. cayenne pepper (more if you like more of a kick)
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 tsp. turmeric
- 1 tsp. sea salt
- 2 cans chickpeas, drained
- Combine everything except the chickpeas in a crock pot and turn on low for 6-8 hours. Add chickpeas, and cook 2 more hours until they’re tender and have incorporated the Indian flavors. Serve over Basmati rice.
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