Cholay (Curried Chickpeas)

Cholay (Curried Chickpeas)


"This is a very flavourful recipe from North India, usually eaten with fried bread like bhatura or puri. I like to serve it over rice for a very filling meal. You can also try it as a quick snack over toasted bread. This recipe is much quicker to make if you use precooked canned beans, but I like to think that the authentic flavour comes from doing it the hard way!"


45 m servings 248 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 6 servings



  • Calories:
  • 248 kcal
  • 12%
  • Fat:
  • 6.7 g
  • 10%
  • Carbs:
  • 40.2g
  • 13%
  • Protein:
  • 8.5 g
  • 17%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 0 mg
  • 0%
  • Sodium:
  • 446 mg
  • 18%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  • Prep

  • Cook

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  1. Place the 2 cups water, tea bag, and bay leaf into a pot, and bring water to a boil. Reserving about 1/2 cup garbanzo beans, stir the beans into the boiling water. When beans are heated through, discard the tea bag and bay leaf. Remove from heat. Drain the beans, reserving water, and set aside.
  2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a skillet over medium heat, and saute the sliced onion until tender. Remove from heat, cool, and mix in the reserved garbanzo beans, 1 tomato, and 1/2 the cilantro leaves. Set aside.
  3. Heat the remaining oil in a skillet over medium heat. Blend in the coriander, cumin seeds, ginger, and garlic. Cook and stir for 15 to 20 seconds, until lightly browned. Mix in the turmeric. Stir the chopped onion into the skillet, and cook until tender. Mix in the remaining tomatoes. Season with salt, cayenne pepper, and garam masala. Bring the tomato liquid to a boil, and cook about 5 minutes. Stir in the boiled garbanzo beans, sliced onion mixture, and enough of the reserved water to attain a thick, gravy-like consistency. Continue to cook and stir 5 minutes. Garnish with the remaining cilantro leaves to serve.


  • Note
  • If you are using dried garbanzo beans, soak them overnight (about 8 hours) and cook them in boiling water (enough to cover the beans) along with the bay leaf and tea bag until the beans are soft enough to mash with two fingers but still hold their shape. Remove the tea bag and bay leaf once the beans are cooked.
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  1. 73 Ratings


The best Cholay/Chana Masala recipie... as long as a couple of adjustments are made. 1. One can of chickpeas per batch 2. Use a strong robust black tea (Find a local Indian store and ask the cl...

Excellent recipe. It took me two tries to get it just right though. I adjusted some items the second time I made it as follows. First, I reduced the amount of Chickpeas to one can while keepi...

Bland. I even tried adding more spices at the end, and again when reheating, and that helped a little but not enough. Perhaps it's that most of the spices only get added to the onions; the t...

It's actually a fairly easy recipe that doesn't take nearly as much preparation time as suggested, especially if you use canned tomatoes. In addition, while it is mild in flavor this is a rec...

I tasted it while it was still in the pan (during that last five minutes of cooking) and I was pretty disappointed in the flavor. So then I added another round of spices, including cayenne pepp...

The way to make this taste it came from an Indian restuarant is to add a small can of tomato paste near the end of cooking. Much Improved!

Good start but a tad bland for may taste. Perhaps some curry paste or doubling the spice quantities. As others have mentioned, this is a rather involved recipe that requires numerous bowls, pa...

This was a great starting point for a delicious pot of cholay. All I did was add another round of spices, along with some amchar (mango powder) and some channa masala powder. I also take out a...

DELICIOUS & nutritious dinner time favourite! Not too complicated, and excellent flavour. I served it this time with plain couscous and "Absolutely Perfect Palak Paneer" from this site. Even bet...