The slow cooker simmers dried chickpeas with ease, letting them sink down into a gingery, tangy, spiced tomato sauce. Just add warm naan and a crunchy cucumber-radish salad.
What You Get
Chana masala spice mix
What You’ll Need
Ground cayenne (optional)
Makes 6 servings
30 minutes active
10½ hours total
Chop 1 cup of the onion, reserving the rest for another use. Chop 3 or 4 cloves of garlic. Chop 1½ tablespoons ginger. Rinse 2 cups of the chickpeas under cold water. In a slow cooker, combine the chickpeas, 5 cups water, and 2 teaspoons salt.
In a sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Add the onion and sauté until soft and golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, chana masala spice mix, and a pinch of cayenne, if you want a kick, and stir until fragrant, 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, along with their juices, and 2 tablespoons tamarind paste, and cook until the flavors have melded, smashing the tomatoes against the side of the pan with a wooden spoon, 2 to 3 minutes.
Pour the chana masala sauce over the chickpeas and stir to combine. Cover and slow cook until the chickpeas are tender, on the low setting for 10 hours or on the high setting for 5 hours (see note below).
Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, then slice crosswise into half moons. Trim any greens from the radishes, cut the radishes in half, then slice into half moons. Finely chop 1 or 2 cloves of garlic. Chop ¼ cup cilantro, including some of the stems. In a bowl, combine the cucumber, radishes, garlic, and cilantro. Drizzle with the juice of the lime, season with salt, and turn to coat.
Toast the naan until soft and warm. Cut or tear into large pieces and wrap in a towel to keep warm.
When the chana masala is ready, season to taste with salt or cayenne, if necessary. Ladle the channa masala into shallow bowls, and pile the cucumber-radish salad on top. Serve warm, with the torn naan for dipping.
Equipment note: If you’re using an Instant Pot instead of a slow cooker, settings vary. Set the Instant Pot to slow cook on the “normal” setting for 10 hours.