Archive for April 8th, 2012

I’m  a huge fan of Caribbean food. Give me some jerk chicken, curry goat, oxtails, escoveitch fish, or roti any day, and I’ll be happy. I also love caribbean spices such as allspice and thyme, and the flavorful bite of scotch bonnet (habanero) peppers. I can eat patties all day, but there’s a great snack from Trinidad called “Doubles,” which is two pieces of fried dough stuffed with a chickpea mixture, and channa aloo is actually that delicious filling. This dish is also my goto Trini recipe–especially when there’s not much in the cupboard but a can of chickpeas, and I’m looking for something quick, easy and delicious. It’s usually eaten with roti, a traditional West Indian flat bread, but eat it with rice and you’re getting a perfect protein. So good, I bet you won’t believe it’s also vegan, so indulge in something healthy too.

The Recipe

 From Sweet Hands: Island Cooking from Trinidad & Tobago (Hippocrene Books) by Ramin Ganeshram


1 cup dried, or 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas

2 tablespoons canola oil

½ small onion, chopped (optional)

6 cloves garlic

1 tablespoon chopped shado beni or cilantro leaves

¼ Scotch Bonnet or other hot red chili pepper

2 tablespoons Trinidad curry powder

1 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, cut into ½ -inch chunks

1.)   If using dried chickpeas, soak them in 3 cups water overnight; drain and rinse. In a deep saucepan, cook the chickpeas in 3 cups of fresh water, simmering until tender (about 15 minutes). If using canned chickpeas, drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.

2.)   Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pot and add onion, garlic, shado beni (or cilantro) and hot pepper. Cook for 1 minute, stirring often

3.)   Add the curry powder and cook, stirring constantly for 30-45 seconds (Do not allow curry to scorch).

4.)   Stir in the chickpeas and potatoes. Cook covered for 1-2 minutes. Add just enough water to cover the potatoes and simmer, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Salt to taste. Serve with hot roti.

Makes 4-6 servings

channa aloo served with a hot buttered naan, tomato slices, and some mango chutney

Sweet Hands available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Read Full Post »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 954 other followers

%d bloggers like this: