And, moving on. I've discovered that some folks' chole chaat is more like mine, warm beans in a sauce, or it can be made more like a salad and served room temperature. This is just one variation among many. The chili adds some nice spice and flavor, while the garam masal adds warmth and spice. Then there is the lemon juice. Whoever thought to add lemon juice is brilliant. It adds a brightness and acidity that cuts through everything. My dish is rather beige looking. A little cilantro would be a great addition. Also, if you let your besan or chickpea flour toast more, you will get a deeper color. While we're on the subject of besan...I'm sure you could substitute the besan with another starch. I like it because it tastes good and it's very high protein since its made from chickpeas. It is on the pricey-side. I have never seen it less than $3.25 per pound. Potato is traditional in this dish. I think it's great without potato. Or, when potatoes are on sale, add a little extra to stretch out the beans. Here is one version of chole chaat. Enjoy!
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (if using dry, 1 cup dry is probably reasonable)
2 medium potatoes, boiled or baked, peeled and cubed
2 generous tablespoons of oil
1/4 besan (chickpea flour)
1 tablespoon grated ginger
1 seeded and diced serrano
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
salt to taste, 1/2 - 1 1/2 teaspoons
1 tablespoon garam masala
1 tablespoon lemon juice (2 tablespoons if you really like the brightness)
1 1/2 cups water
- Heat oil in a pan large pan, heat the oil. Add the besan. Toast until it turns golden brown or about 2 minutes.
- Add chili and ginger, stir for a few seconds. Then, add the water and chickpeas.
- Add the cumin, black pepper, and salt. If you like, mash some of the chickpeas as you mix in the seasonings. Turn the heat down to low and simmer 10-15 minutes.
- Add potato, garam masala, and lemon juice. Mix carefully and let simmer about 5 minutes. Serve with rice or bread.