Chole / Garbanzo beans pulao is an all time one-pot comfort meal for my family. Earlier I did not have an idea that chole can be used to make pulao, until a few years back I saw this recipe on a Pakistani Youtube channel. I tried it and wallah! Since then this dish is a regular on my list of weekly must-haves.
India is a land of diverse flavors and regional cuisines. The diversity is mainly because of the differences in soil type, culture, climate and more. This particular dish is more popular in the Northern parts of India. I am not sure if I am correct but I feel that Chana pulao has its influence from Pakistani foods and culture. It is wonderful to find various dishes in each country having some sort of influence from their friendly neighbors :).
Chana pulao can be prepared using very simple ingredients. Even my daughter who is a picky meat eater, loves this dish. It can be enjoyed with a bowl of chilled raita or simple yogurt.
Garbanzo beans: soaked overnight (or you could simply use the canned beans)
Basmati rice: 2 cups (soaked and washed)
Onions: 2 medium sized (thinly sliced)
Garlic: 5-6 cloves
Ginger – 1 small piece
Mint and coriander leaves – 1 small bunch
Tomatoes – 1-2 medium sized
Turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp
Coriander powder – 1 tbsp
Chana masala – 1 tbsp
Garam masala – 1 tbsp
Kasuri methi – 1 tsp crushed
Green chillies – 3-4 slit
Cumin seeds – 1 tbsp
Bay leaves – 2-3
Cloves – 5-6
Whole black peppercorns – 5-6
Cinnamon sticks – 2-3 small sized
Cardamom pods – 2-3
Salt – as per taste
Pressure cook the soaked garbazo beans until they are cooked.
Grind the coriander leaves, mint leaves, ginger and garlic in a blender.
Take some oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds, bay leaves, peppercorns, cloves, cardamom pods and cinnamon sticks. Stir for a few seconds. Then put in the thinly sliced onions. Add the turmeric powder. Once the onions start turning golden brown, add in the ginger garlic mint coriander leaves paste. Saute for few mins until the raw smell of ginger garlic goes away.
Then add in the chopped tomatoes and all the spice powders – red chilli powder, coriander powder, chana masala and garam masala powder. Also add the slit green chillies. Mix and let this cook until the tomatoes turn mushy and oil starts oozing out from the masala.
Now add the boiled garbanzo beans and mix with the masala for a few seconds.
Add in the washed rice. Give it a good mix.
Then add in water. For 2 cups of rice, I take 4 cups of water. Add the salt and kasuri methi powder. Give everything a good mix. Cover and cook until the rice is well done.