Me and my husband both love lemon in savoury dishes. We also love Indian food, chillies and raw onion. It should then be no surprise that the name of this dish, Sour Chickpeas (Khatte Chhloe), caught my eye when I saw it on Couscous and Consciousness. When I read through the recipe and saw that the sourness comes from a dressing made with lemon juice, raw chillies, ginger and shallots, I had a craving for it as it reminded me of one of my other favourite recipes. Even if I hadn’t tried the whole dish I was then in the mood to try out that dressing on something. I know I would really like it on fish or steak but I decided to make the recipe more or less as it stood. After all, I do like chickpeas as well. I didn’t stir the dressing into the chickpeas as I liked the look of it on top of the dish. We both really liked the strong flavours of the dressing against the chickpeas and it was certainly the dressing that made the dish special.
The dish was adapted from a Madhur Jaffrey recipe in Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cookery.
Ingredients – serves 2
400g tin chickpeas
2 tomatoes, diced
1 chilli pepper, thinly sliced
1 piece of root ginger, grated or finely diced
1 small onion, finely diced
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
Pinch of Salt
How to Make Sour Chickpeas
1. Make the sour dressing first. In a small bowl put half of the chilli pepper, the ginger and 1/4 of the onion. Pour the lemon juice over the top and add a pinch of salt. Leave until ready to serve.
2. Cook the rest of the onion and chilli pepper in a saucepan until soft. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for another couple of minutes.
3. Then add the chickpeas, the spices and about 200ml of water. Bring up to the boil then lower the heat to a simmer about for 20 minutes.
4. When ready to serve, either stir the dressing into the chickpeas or serve it on top of the chickpeas.
I served the chickpeas as a side dish with marinated grilled chicken and flatbread but you could serve them just with rice as a main meal.