There are certain combinations of food which we never tire of having… one such combination is that of chickpeas and rice. We simply love it. I usually try to make slight variations here and there, and it goes down really well with all four of us.
The following version is that of some lightly flavoured rice roughly tossed with some chickpeas in a gravy and baked.
I also added a topping of some leftover cheese from here, which, apart from forming a crisp layer on top, added nothing to an otherwise lovely dish. So one can very easily avoid adding any. It looked nice when it came out from the oven, and the children, the die hard fans of cheese that they are, still liked the cheesy layer, but Dinesh and me really felt that the dish could have very well gone without it. So next time, I’m just going to cover the dish with a lid or some foil before popping it into the oven.
That said, apart from the topping, the rest of the dish was lovely… not overtly spicy and although a plate of chickpeas and rice can be quite filling, it filled us up in a nice sort of way ( for we do tend to eat slightly more when it comes to this combination!) So here’s the recipe for the chickpeas and rice bake…
For the rice-
2 C basmati rice
1 tblsp olive oil
1 tblsp garam masala
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 bay leaf
2 and 1/2 C of water
For the chickpeas-
2-3 C of chickpeas , soaked for 6-8 hours or overnight and boiled
1 tblsp of olive oil
1 onion finely chopped
3-4 pods of garlic, finely chopped
1 tomato, finely chopped
1 small bunch of coriander, chopped
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tblsp roasted and ground cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp garam masala powder
1 tblsp tomato puree
1 and 1/2 C of vegetable stock
salt to taste
30 gms of grated leicester cheese(can easily be avoided)
- Heat the oil for the rice.
- Add the cumin seeds, garam masala and bay leaf.
- When the seeds crackle and the oil begins to leave an aroma, add the rice and fry for 4-5 minutes.
- Add the water , stir, cover and cook till all the water is absorbed. Stir lightly and keep aside, uncovered (do not be tempted to add any more water at this stage)
- Heat the oil for the chickpeas and add the onions, garlic and red pepper, along with the paprika, cumin and turmeric.
- Stir fry till the onions are translucent and then add the tomato along with the puree.
- Cook till the tomatoes soften and then add 3/4 of the chickpeas.
- Smash the remaining 1/4 of the chickpeas and add to the rest in the pan.
- Season with salt and stir fry for 6-7 minutes.
- Add the stock, bring to a boil and simmer till the liquid reduces to half..keep stirring in between.
- Add the coriander and garam masala powder and remove from heat.
- Pre heat the oven at 250 deg C.
- Place the rice in a baking dish.
- Add the chickpeas and roughly toss the two together.
- Sprinkle the cheese on top and bake in the centre of the pre heated oven till the cheese melts and the top nicely browns ( if avoiding the cheese, cover the dish with a lid or aluminium foil and bake for 15-20 minutes)
- Serve hot with some raita.
The finished product did satisfy the palatte. The flavours from the chickpeas infused into the rice was a delight. Once again, this combination worked really well for us… and as the kids were eager to gobble up the cheesy layer, I had no regrets at all
And since we enjoyed this meal a lot, I’m sending it over to Susan for her legume love affair.
Have a great weekend!!