Some things in life are beyond description, like the shades of sky at sunset, smell of air after rain, or my first taste of coconut cream. Thicker than coconut milk, coconut cream is sensual, luxurious, and deeply satisfying.
Make this curry as spicy as you can take it, or keep it mild to let the other flavours shine through. Let your taste buds guide your exploration of this dish and many more.
Don’t be intimidated by the long list of ingredients. Most are spices and require only measuring. You can also substitute garam masala for the spices. If you do not have dried mango powder, I suggest trying lemon/ lime juice.
Coconut Chickpea Curry
- 1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight then boiled
- 4 tbsp oil, divided
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 russet potato, diced (about 1.5 cm cubes)
- 2 cups water, divided
- Salt to taste
- 2 black cardamom pods
- 1.5 tsp black mustard seeds
- 1.5 tsp whole coriander seeds
- 2 tsp whole cumin seeds
- 2 tsp grated/ minced fresh ginger
- 2 whole dried red chilies
- 1/2 tsp ground chili powder
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/4 tsp ground fennel seed
- 1 tsp dried mango powder
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 200 mL canned coconut cream
- 2 small or 1 large tomato, diced
- In a large pot, heat 1 tbsp oil and saute onion over medium heat until golden brown, add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
- Add diced potatoes, 1 cup water, and some salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then simmer until potatoes are soft. Add more water to prevent burning if necessary.
- Add chickpeas to potatoes and continue to cook.
- Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan with a lid, heat remaining oil (3 tbsp) over medium-high heat. Add whole cardamom, mustard, coriander, and cumin seeds. Put a lid on the pan and let the spices splutter and pop. When the spluttering slows down, add ginger and whole chilies, stir for 15 seconds. Next, add the ground spices and cook for 15 seconds.
- To the spices, add coconut cream and the remaining 1 cup water.
- Pour the coconut and spice mixture into the pot with the chickpeas, add tomato(es). Simmer for 5-10 minutes to allow flavours to blend. Taste and adjust seasonings. Remove whole cardamom pods and chilies before serving with rice or a bread of your choosing.