Chana Ghashi recipe. Konkani style ghasi preparation. Mangalorean Chana Ghashi is very popular. Chana Ghashi or Kadle gashi is vegan and gluten-free.
Chana Ghashi is special to me because I learned to make it from my grandmother. I learned it from her when I was in my teens, but then, I never cooked it till I got married and settled in my own home.
Most of these Konkani dishes I make are the ones I learned form my grandmother. She lived with us till she passed away in 2001 and she was a treasure trove of recipes. She cooked a lot and all her dishes were traditional and tasty.
Well, I have never seen her use a measuring cup or spoon, the only “measuring vessel” she had was to measure the rice for Dosa, Idli etc. Her measurements were always “a handful of this” and “a pinch of this and that”. But I have never seen her go wrong in measurements and her cooking. The dishes she created day in and day out were perfect, every time. I shared her love of cooking even when I was a kid, learning more by observing rather than the hands-on way. There are many a times, now, that I wish I had spent more time with her and learned how to cook from her (by actually doing it). Those were my carefree days, the days when I expected to be taken care of, fed well, but the thought of “Yeah, I will start my own food blog” never crossed my mind. I took things for granted, but I am happy that I was actually paying attention to the way she was running the kitchen.
This is a dish that invokes beautiful memories every time I make it. This was my grandmother’s specialty – most Fridays.
Why Friday? You wonder!
Friday was the Chana Ghashi day at home. It was considered auspicious to have Chana (Black Garbanzo beans) on Fridays. It would either be Chana Ghashi or Chana Saaru and Upkari on most Fridays.
The belief was that if you eat, Chana on Friday, Goddess Lakshmi would be pleased with you and shower some extra blessings on you. Lakshmi is the goddess of wealth and who did not want showers of wealth on them?
I know it is a superstition, but a good one. The thing is we were a vegetarian family and these superstitions were a way to include a variety of beans and legumes, high in protein content, in our diet. One of the ways to make people follow it religiously, was to tie it with a religious aspect.
Religious or not, I still follow it. Most of the Fridays, it Chana Ghashi time at home.
The recipe for Chana Ghashi is a pretty straightforward one. The highlight of the Chana Ghashi is the “phodo” or the vegetable pieces that go with it. I like Chana Ghashi either with suran (yam) or tender jack fruit, the latter one being my favorite.
Tender jack fruit is seasonal in India, available only during the summer months. But here in the US, one visit to an East-Asian store, I can bring back tinned jack fruit cans, to my heart’s content. Of course, I know they are not the real deal, but cooking them in the gravy makes them closer to the real one. Well, almost.
Back when I was a kid, the staple food was plain rice. Plain rice would be served with either Daali Thoy or Koddel or Ghashi- the first dish always always made with Toor Dal. Koddel and Ghashi can be made with different pulses or legumes based on the availability, day of the week etc. Then there would be a vegetable stir fry (upkari) and pappads (fried thin lentil fritters). The meal always ended with fresh buttermilk (for lunch) and warm milk (for dinner). Life was that simple. Processed food were kept to the minimum. My grandmother made snacks at home and the store-bought goodies were once in a blue moon treats.
This chana ghashi can be made thick and served as a side to rice or made a little runny consistency and served over rice. The choice is yours.
A few months back, Jay, who blogs at Veggie Rumblings (don’t forget to visit her space) had pinged me to ask about a guest post for her blog. I agreed, but also told her that it is going to take a long time – there was an exciting India trip, summer vacation and a long-awaited Florida trip for me to consider. And I wanted to do something fancy-schmancy for her. But little did I know at that time, that this humble Konkani dish is going to be the guest post for her blog. The best part is that the day she published the guest post, she made it at home and pinged me to say she loved it. Thank you so much Jay for the opportunity.
Soaked black garbanzo beans are pressure cooked and then simmered in a spicy and tangy coconut gravy. This is best served with steamed rice.How about trying this Konkani special today?
5 minPrep Time
60 minCook Time
1 hr, 5 Total Time
- 1/2 cup (about 100 grams) kala chana/black garbanzo beans; washed & soaked overnight
- 1 can tender jack fruit in water; washed and drained (see recipe notes)
- Few drops of oil
- 2-3 whole red chilies (adjust to your taste)
- 1 teaspoon paprika (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 4-5 methi seeds/fenugreek seeds
- 1 cup (about 250 grams) grated coconut (fresh or frozen & thawed)
- 1 teaspoon tamarind pulp (see recipe notes)
- Salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 10-12 curry leaves
- Get your ingredients ready.
- Pressure cook the soaked chana (see recipe notes).
- Cut the tender jack fruit into bite sized pieces.
- Heat a few drops of oil in a small pan and splutter the mustard seeds. When it starts spluttering, add the methi seeds and whole red chillies. Remove from heat when the methi seeds and red chillies change color and the mix becomes aromatic.
- Grind coconut with this mix along with tamarind pulp with about 1/2 cup of water (add a little more if required)
- Add the tender jackfruit pieces, salt and about 3/4 cup of water to the cooked chana and bring to a boil.
- Add the ground coconut paste to the chana. Bring to boil.
- Adjust the consistency, salt and other seasonings.
- Prepare the tempering – heat the oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds and when it splutters, add the curry leaves. Pour the seasoned oil along with the mustard seeds and curry leaves to the boiling gravy.
1. Cooking chana on a stove top without a pressure cooker.
I never cook dried beans directly over a stove top. If you do not have a pressure cooker, you can cook it on the stove top, but it will take a really long time to cook perfectly. I guess they would take anywhere from 1 to 1 1/2 hrs (maybe more). After soaking, drain the water and add fresh water. Bring the water and beans to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook the beans till they are tender. Check for doneness by smashing the beans between your thumb and index finger - When it easily smashes it is done.
2. Pressure cook chana
Drain the soaked chana and add it to the pressure cooker with 2 cups of water. Close the cooker and put the whistle on. Cook on high heat till the cooker lets out one whistle. Lower the heat to medium and pressure cook for another 20-25 minutes. Turn off the heat. Let the steam escape on its own ( about 5-8 minutes).
3. Tamarind Pulp - I use tamarind pulp which is quite tangy. Instead of tamarind pulp, you can use tamarind soaked in water to soften it up. I would recommend using about cherry-sized (or gooseberry sized) tamarind in this recipe.
4. If possible, try to use Byadagi Chillies, they impart a beautiful red hue to the dish without adding too much heat.
5. Instead of tender jack fruit, you can also use suran (yam).1 can of tender jack fruit contains about 250g of jack fruit pieces. Best is to use fresh tender jack fruit instead of the canned ones. If using fresh, cook the jack fruit or suran pieces separately before adding it to the chana.
5. I add paprika for color and not for the heat.
6. 1 cup = 250ml.
If you have a story about why you make a certain dish at home, please share it in comments below. I L-O-V-E to hear your stories.