Punjabi Chhole Masala - An Irresistible, Nutritious Meal
Chhole masala is a favourite not just in north India, but in kitchens all across the country. After all, what could be more comforting than a bowlful of spicy chole with a side of hot pooris or bhaturas? The traditional Punjabi Chhole is made from a mix of whole and powdered spices. But the star ingredient in this dish is the white chickpeas or kabuli chana, a protein-rich pulse which is not only delicious, but offers numerous health benefits too.
Nutritional Value of Chhole
The nutrient-dense chhole or Bengal gram is an excellent source of plant protein, containing 19 grams of protein per 100 gram serving. It is also a good source of dietary fibre, minerals, and vitamins. It is particularly rich in folate, potassium, magnesium and calcium. Chhole is rich in bioactive compounds like biochanin A, lycopene and saponins which have been shown to decrease the risk of certain kinds of cancers.Chickpeas also have a low glycemic index and great for diabetics. As chickpeas are an excellent source of vegan protein, its additional health benefits include weight management and better bone health.
What Makes Chhole Masala
Traditional chhole masala is made by dry roasting various spices, combining and grinding them into a fine powder. It contains turmeric, ginger, mace, chilli, bay leaf, black pepper, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, fenugreek, fennel, mint, dried mango powder, pomegranate powder, salt and asafoetida.
Some health benefits of ingredients used in chhole masala are -
- Curcumin, which is found in turmeric, can help reduce inflammation
- Ginger is high in gingerols; it contains powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
- Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory effects, which can help lower your risk of heart disease.
- Cumin is extremely beneficial for digestive health.
- Coriander is full of antioxidants which may have immune-boosting, anticancer, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects.
- Fenugreek contains a good amount of fibre and minerals, including iron and magnesium.
- Fennel seeds have nutrients, such as vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, potassium and manganese.
Cooking up the Perfect Chhole Masala
Soak 1 cup of Tata Sampann Kabuli Chana overnight or for a minimum of 8 hours before cooking. Rinse and drain the chickpeas, and then pressure cook with 1½ cup of water for 5 or 6 whistles, or until the chickpeas have softened. Sauté cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and bay leaves until they crackle. Add 1 tbsp of ginger garlic paste and sauté till the raw smell subsides. Next, add a slit green chilli and 1 ½ cup chopped onions, and sauté till they become golden brown. Add in a cupful of chopped tomatoes, a bit of haldi and salt and cook until the tomatoes break down completely. You could prepare a chhole masala powder as mentioned above or simply use a heaped teaspoonful of Tata Sampann Punjabi Chhole Masala. Fry until the oil separates. Now mix in the cooked chana along with a cup of chana stock and simmer for about 20 minutes. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve with pooris or rice.
When you’re shopping for ingredients, make sure you choose only the freshest and purest. Get that perfect blend of northern flavours with Tata Sampann Punjabi Chhole Masala. The spices are carefully sourced and it is specially packaged to ensure the nutrients stay intact.
Do you have some tips to make the delicious chhole masala even better? Share them with us in the comments below.
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