Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Chano Ani kanang ghalnu upkari ( Chick-pea and sweet potato stir-fry)

This is one of my favorite dishes for breakfast. It is nutritious and filling. Not to mention, easy to make! I usually pair it with another traditional favorite combination Phova chutney or the non-traditional combination: a nice slice of buttered toast. The latter is my husband's preferred combination. This Chana upkari is traditionally made with black Chana or black chick-peas, you could also make it with white chick peas. I like both of them. So how do we make it?? Here we go:

Servings: 4


Chick peas( Chana): 2 cups black or white cooked. ( If using canned, 1 10 oz can)
Sweet potato: 1 medium sized, washed and chopped to medium cubes.
Coconut oil: 1 tsp
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Green chillies: 2-3 slit lengthwise.( can be adjusted based on your spice level).
Hing( asofoetida): a pinch if using powder, 1 tsp if using solution.
Salt: to taste
Jaggery/ brown sugar: 1 tsp
Freshly grated coconut: 1 tbsp


Heat a sauté pan/ kadai with oil. Add mustard seeds. 

Once the mustard seeds splutter add the slit green chillies, sauté for few seconds. 

Now, add the diced sweet potato, hing, salt, jaggery and 2 cups water.

Cover and cook until the sweet potatoes are 3/4 done. 

Now, add in the cooked chick peas and mix well. Cover and cook on medium until the sweet potato is cooked well. 

You could now open and dry the excess water if you wish. You don't have to. In fact if it is being made to be eaten with Phova chutney ( beaten rice) then the excess water ( sauce)is left so that it is more delicious to eat!

Serve hot with Phova chutney/ flat bread/ toast or as a side dish with rice!


Cooking made easy:

If using dried chick peas, soak it overnight with a pinch of baking soda. This significantly reduces the cooking time and makes the chick peas nice and tender. The chick peas needs to be cooked in a pressure cooker for 15 minutes after the first whistle. Turn the stove off an do not open the cooker until the pressure inside has completely subsided.

If using canned chickpeas, ensure that you thoroughly rinse  in water and drain the chick peas before use.

Tip for healthy living:

Avoid canned food as much as possible. Apart from the fact that they are not as nutritious as fresh produce, canned goods contain a very high level of sodium. Salt is often used as a preservative.They also may have BPA from the inner plastic liner and aluminum from the can leach in it.

Food for thought:

Self-love is the source of all other loves. Pierre Corneille