Jaisalmeri Kala Chana| Rajasthani Black Chickpeas Curry

Thinking about the state of Rajasthan conjures up mental images of caravans of camels walking through the arid desert, the most gorgeous of old-world havelis, serene lakes, bazaars filled with colourful goodies which would bring joy to any shopper’s heart. I’ve never had a chance to visit, but I’ve dreamt about it oh, so many times. I’ve also had the pleasure of trying out many of the wonderful indigenous dishes Rajasthan boasts of, here in Bangalore, and can’t wait to explore them in their homeland itself. This Jaisalmeri Kala Chana is one such dish exclusive to Rajasthan, which hails from a place called Jaisalmer.

Thanks to the extreme weather conditions in Rajasthan most part of the year, the state’s cuisine comprises of a number of dishes using sun-dried fritters (vadi), gram flour (besan), sour curd, dried pulses and lentils. This Jaisalmeri Kala Chana recipe is also one such – dried black chickpeas are cooked and then simmered in a sour curd gravy, thickened with besan, to make this delicious confection.

I recently prepared Jaisalmeri Kala Chana for lunch, and it went on to be hugely appreciated by the family. It is a very, very simple thing to make, but utterly delish and comforting, a lovely side to rotis and/or steamed rice. Full of the nutrition of black chickpeas too!

Let me now tell you how to go about making this beauty of a thing.

Ingredients (serves 3-4):

  1. 1/2 cup black chickpeas (chana)
  2. About 2 cups thick sour curd
  3. About 2 heaped tablespoons gram flour (besan)
  4. Salt to taste
  5. Red chilli powder to taste
  6. 1/2 teaspoon garam masala (optional)
  7. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  8. 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  9. 1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin powder

For the tempering:

  1. 1/2 tablespoon ghee
  2. 1/2 tablespoon oil
  3. 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  4. 4-5 dry red chillies
  5. 2 generous pinches of asafoetida
  6. A pinch of fenugreek seeds
  7. 2 sprigs fresh curry leaves (optional)
  8. 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder

For the garnishing:

  1. 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander


1. Soak the black chickpeas in just enough water to cover them, for 8-10 hours or overnight.

2. When the chickpeas are done soaking, discard the water they were soaked in. Transfer them to a wide vessel and add in just enough water to cover them. Place in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for about 4 whistles or till the chickpeas are well cooked. Let the pressure release naturally.

3. In the meanwhile, take the thick sour curd in a large mixing bowl. Add in the gram flour,salt to taste, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder, roasted cumin powder and garam masala. Whisk well to ensure that all the ingredients are well combined together and that there are no lumps. Keep aside.

4. Take the curd mixture in a large pan and place on medium flame. Add in the cooked black chickpeas too, along with the water they were cooked in. Mix well. Cook this till it comes to a boil, stirring intermittently. This should take 3-4 minutes.

5. Now, turn down the flame further and allow the mixture to simmer for about 2 minutes.

6. In the meanwhile, prepare the tempering. Heat the ghee and oil together in a small pan. Add in the cumin seeds and let them stay in for a couple of seconds. Turn flame down to low. Add the dried red chillies, asafoetida, curry leaves and fenugreek seeds to the pan. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds. Switch off gas, and immediately add in the 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder for the tempering. Mix well.

7. Immediately pour this tempering into the curd mixture simmering in the other pan. Mix well. When the curd has simmered for the requisite 2 minutes, switch off gas.

8. Mix in the finely chopped fresh coriander. Your Jaisalmeri Kala Chana is ready. Serve it hot with rotis or plain steamed rice.


1. Adjust the quantity of curd you use, depending upon how thick you want the Jaisalmeri Kala Chana to be.

2. Use thick curd that is sour but not overly so. I have used home-made thick curd here.

3. Make sure the black chickpeas are well cooked before adding them to the pan.

4. The curd mixture should be cooked on medium flame to ensure that it doesn’t curdle.

5. I have used a mix of refined oil and ghee for the tempering. You may use only oil or only ghee instead, too.

6. The garam masala is optional. However, adding it to the Jaisalmeri Kala Chana is indeed a nice touch.

7. Do not overcook the Jaisalmeri Kala Chana after it comes to a boil. Just simmer it for a couple of minutes after that, and it’s good to go.

8. Adding the curry leaves in the tempering is optional. I added them because I love them in tempering in a curd-based dish.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me in your comments!


This post is for the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap group that I am part of. Every month, the food bloggers in this group pair up, and then the pairs cook from each other’s blogs.

My partner for the month is Rafeeda, who writes at The Big Sweet Tooth. Her blog is a huge repository of recipes, including several desserts and baked goodies. I zeroed in on this Jaisalmeri Kala Chana recipe, though, and made it with a few variations of my own.

Check out what the other members of the group have prepared, for this month’s recipe swap.

Pineapple Chutney|Sonth Chutney/  Bitter Gourd Roast|Butter Biscuits|Broken Wheat Upma| Lobia Vada|Balti Sauce|Garlic Bread Sticks| Cuca de Banana|Beaten Rice Mix

I’m also sharing this recipe with Fiesta Friday #280. The co-host this week is Ai @ Ai Made It For You.

Sattu Ka Ghol| Savoury Sattu Drink

While holidaying in Calcutta a few years ago, experiencing Kali Pujo, the husband and I would often come across streams of people gulping down glasses of some sort of watery drink, at the carts of street-side vendors. The drink surely looked interesting, a pale brown in colour, with finely chopped onions, green chillies and coriander in it. Back then, we didn’t know what it was, but it surely looked like a thirst quencher – the heat was killing, and the drink seemed to be offering people some respite. We didn’t try it out. It was much later that I learnt what that drink was – Sattu Ka Ghol, or a savoury sherbet made using roasted black chickpea flour aka sattu or chane ka sattu.

I recently saw the recipe for Sattu Ka Ghol on Sasmita’s blog, First Timer Cook, and absolutely had to try it out. I made it with black pepper powder instead of green chillies, and kept it quite watery. It turned out simply beautiful – delicious, very refreshing, just the thing you need on a hot summer’s day. It took me not more than 5 minutes to put the Sattu Ka Ghol together!

Sattu is a powerhouse of nutrients, with several health benefits to it. No wonder blue-collar workers in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Bengal have been consuming it for ages! Of late, the many benefits of sattu are being recognised the world over, and it isbeing touted as a superfood. This Sattu Ka Ghol is a supremely easy (not to forget delish!) way of getting all those health benefits in! This is a vegan, completely plant-based drink, and a gluten-free one as well.

If you haven’t tried out Sattu Ka Ghol ever, you must definitely do so this summer. Here’s how I made it, following the recipe from Sasmita’s blog, with a few minor variations.

Ingredients (makes about 4 small glasses):

  1. 3 heaped tablespoons sattu
  2. 2 cups of chilled water or as required
  3. Black salt to taste
  4. 1 teaspoon black pepper powder or as per taste
  5. 1 teaspoon roasted cumin powder or as per taste
  6. Juice of 1 lemon or to taste
  7. 2 tablespoons very finely chopped onion (optional)
  8. 1 tablespoon very finely chopped fresh coriander


1. Take the sattu in a mixing bowl. Add in about 1/2 cup of the chilled water, and mix well till the sattu gets completely dissolved in the water.

2. Now, add in the rest of the chilled water, along with the black salt, black pepper powder, roasted cumin powder and lemon juice. Mix well, ensuring that all the ingredients are well combined together.

3. Pour the drink into serving glasses. Add some finely chopped onion (if using) and coriander to each serving glass. Serve immediately.


  1. I have used store-bought sattu here, but you can make your own at home if you so prefer.
  2. Using the black salt is highly recommended, as it adds a lovely flavour and taste to the Sattu Ka Ghol. Do not substitute regular table salt for it, unless you absolutely cannot avoid doing so.
  3. Adjust the quantitites of all the above ingredients depending upon personal taste preferences and how light/thick you would prefer the Sattu Ka Ghol to be.
  4. Finely chopped green chillies can be used in place of the black pepper powder. I prefer using the black pepper powder, as I can avoid the danger of biting into a green chilly bit by doing so. 🙂
  5. If you so prefer, you can use a mix of finely chopped green chillies and black pepper powder to spice up the Sattu Ka Ghol.
  6. I have used home-made black pepper powder and roasted cumin powder here.
  7. Finely chopped fresh mint leaves can be added to the drink too. I haven’t.
  8. Adding the finely chopped onion to the Sattu Ka Ghol is optional, but I would highly recommend doing so. It adds a lovely bite and flavour to the drink.
  9. Make sure you use chilled water to make the drink. I prefer using water naturally chilled in an earthen pot over refrigerated water.
  10. Ensure that the sattu is well dissolved in the little water you initially add in, without any lumps, before adding the rest of the ingredients.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


This post is for the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap group. Every month, the food bloggers who are part of this group pair up, with every pair cooking a recipe from each other’s blog. I was paired with Sasmita this month, and chose this Sattu Ka Ghol recipe from her blog.

Also, do check out the recipes that the other members of Food Bloggers Recipe Swap have come up with: Paniyaram by Mireille| Raw Banana Fry by Nayna| Veg Mayo Sandwich by Pavani| Mango Burfi by Lathiya| Oats Dosa by Usha| Pineapple Sorbet by Narmadha| Appam by Shalini| Poha Chivda by Sasmita| Turkish Semolina Pudding by Sandhya| Imli Ka Amlana by Jayashree

I’m also sharing this post with Fiesta Friday #276.

Gajar Mula Beet No Sambharo|Gujarati Root Vegetable Stir Fry Recipe

This Gajar Mula Beet No Sambharo is something you must absolutely try out!

Sambharo‘ is the Gujarati version of a stir-fry, or a warm salad of sorts. It can be prepared using a variety of vegetables – raw papaya, cabbage, carrot, beetroot and radish, for example. Quite a simple (but nutritious and delicious!) thing to make, the sambharo commonly makes an appearance as a part of the Gujarati thali, or is served alongside local snacks like fafda, thepla, khaman and dhokla.

This Gajar Mula Beet No Sambharo is made using the root vegetables of carrot, radish and beetroot. I loved the bright red of the stir-fry and its gorgeous taste. It made for just the perfect accompaniment to the Mixed Vegetable Roti that I served it with.

The very simple stir-fry that this is, it takes bare minutes to put together. Very little oil goes into it, the veggies cooked just enough to retain their crunch. The carrot, radish and beetroot meld together beautifully to create a delicious whole. What more can you ask for from a dish? If you are looking for an easy-peasy, healthy and delish accompaniment for your meals this summer, this is it!

This Gajar Mula Beet No Sambharo is a vegan, entirely plant-based, dish. Omit the asafoetida in the tempering, and it becomes a gluten-free food as well.

Here’s the recipe!

Ingredients (serves 2-3):

  1. 1 big beetroot
  2. 2 medium-sized carrots
  3. 1 small radish
  4. 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  5. 1 tablespoon oil
  6. 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  7. A pinch of fenugreek seeds
  8. 3-4 green chillies
  9. 2 pinches of asafoetida
  10. Salt to taste
  11. A dash of red chilli powder or to taste (optional)
  12. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  13. 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander
  14. Juice of 1/2 lemon or to taste


1. Peel the beetroot, carrot and radish. Grate them medium thick. Keep aside.

2. Slit the green chillies length-wise. Keep aside.

3. Dry roast the sesame seeds in a pan till they start turning brown, about a minute. Transfer the roasted sesame to a plate and keep aside.

4. Heat oil in the same pan. Add in the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Now, add the fenugreek seeds, asafoetida and slit green chillies. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds.

5. Add the grated beetroot, carrot and radish to the pan. Cook on medium flame for a minute.

6. Now, add salt to taste, turmeric powder and red chilli powder (if using). Mix well. Cook on medium flame for 1-2 minutes more or till the water from the radish dries up and all the ingredients are well incorporated together. Switch off gas.

7. Mix in the roasted sesame seeds, lemon juice and finely chopped fresh coriander. Your Gajar Mula Beet No Sambharo is ready. You can serve it hot or at room temperature, along with rotis or rice.


1. Adjust the quantity of beetroot, radish and carrot you use, depending upon personal taste preferences.

2. You can let the grated radish rest for a while till it releases water, squeeze out the water and then use the radish in making the sambharo. I chose not to do that.

3. The original recipe suggests the use of seeds (pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and the likes) to garnish the stir-fry. I decided to use sesame seeds instead, and loved how beautifully they went with the sambharo.

4. If you think the heat from the green chillies is enough, you can skip the red chilli powder altogether.

5. You can add a dash of sugar or jaggery powder to the sambharo too. I chose not to – the sweetness of the beetroot was enough.

6. You can cook the beetroot, carrot and radish as much as you want to – slightly crunchy or well-done. I sauteed them till they were cooked through but still retained a bit of a crunch.


This post is for the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap, a Facebook group that I am part of. Every month, a group of us food bloggers form pairs, and then each person proceeds to cook a dish from their partner’s blogs.

This month, I was paired with Jagruti of Jagruti’s Cooking Odyssey. I was thrilled to find several classic Gujarati dishes on her blog, and chose this Gujarati Root Vegetable Stir Fry of hers to prepare.

Check out the recipes that the other members of the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap group have recreated: Blackberry Lime Cupcakes| Spicy Mint Quinoa| Jeera Rice| Easy Chicken Wraps| Bengali Dum Aloo| Andhra Tomato Pickle| Apple Date Chutney |Pesto Pasta ChaatHoney Toasted Sesame Paneer| Ghee Rice| Coconut Rava Ladoo |Gulab Jamun Cupcakes Carrot & Zucchini Noodle Salad

I’m sharing this recipe with Fiesta Friday #271. Ai @ Ai Made It For You is the co-host this week.

Azefa| Ethiopian Lentil Salad

Azefa‘ (also called ‘Azifa‘) is a lentil salad that hails from the exotic land of Ethiopia in Africa, a place I have always dreamt of visiting. Made with different kinds of lentils by different people, this is one of those salads that is simple yet hearty and extremely delicious. The addition of mustard powder is a must in Azefa, which gives it a proper punch.

I recently made Azefa at home for an evening snack, using brown lentils (our very own sabut masoor or whole masoor daal), and it was a huge hit. This Ethiopian Lentil Salad takes just a few minutes to prepare, once you have the ingredients ready, and is super-duper delicious! What’s more, it is oil-free, gluten-free, vegan and protein rich – perfect for weight watchers and diabetics who are looking for a healthy snacking option in between meals. This Ethiopian Lentil Salad is definitely something you must try out too!

I adapted Chef Mireille’s recipe for the Azefa, making a few changes of my own. Here is how I made it.

Ingredients (serves 2-3):

  1. 1/2 cup whole masoor daal aka brown lentils or sabut masoor
  2. 1 small onion
  3. 1 baby cucumber
  4. 1 baby capsicum
  5. 1 small carrot
  6. Juice of 1/2 lemon or to taste
  7. 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander
  8. Salt to taste
  9. 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  10. 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds


1. Take the whole masoor daal in a wide vessel. Wash thoroughly under running water, a couple of times. Drain out all the water.

2. Now, add enough fresh water to the washed and drained lentils to cover them. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Cook for 4 whistles on high flame or till the lentils are well cooked and soft. Switch off gas and let the pressure release naturally.

3. Drain out the water from the cooked lentils, and reserve it. Let the lentils cool down completely, then transfer them to a mixing bowl.

4. Chop the onion, cucumber and capsicum finely. Add to the mixing bowl.

5. Peel the carrot and grate it medium-thick. Add to the mixing bowl.

6. Add the finely chopped coriander to the mixing bowl.

7. Powder the salt, red chilli powder and mustard together in a small mixer. Add this powder to the mixing bowl.

8. Add lemon juice to the mixing bowl.

9. Mix all the ingredients in the mixing bowl well, but gently. Let the salad sit for about 10 minutes, for the flavours to meld together. Serve immediately.


1. I have used a small yellow capsicum here.

2. Adjust the quantity of salt, red chilli powder, lemon juice and mustard that you use in this Ethiopian Lentil Salad, as per personal taste preferences.

3. Use a seedless variety of cucumber, for best results.

4. You can use any variety of lentils to make Azefa – puy lentils, whole masoor daal, whole green moong and the likes.

5. Make sure the lentils are well-cooked and soft, but not overly mushy. Overcooked lentils will make the salad tasteless.

6. Drain out excess water, if any, from the cooked lentils. Don’t discard this water, but reserve it instead. This water – full of nutrients – can be used in a soup or gravy-based curry or for binding dough for rotis.

7. I have used rock salt – a relatively healthier alternative to commercially available table salt – in this Ethiopian Lentil Salad. You may use regular table salt instead, too.

8. I have used carrot, onion, cucumber and capsicum to make the salad more hearty. You may add in any other vegetables of your choice as well.

9. Several online recipes for Azefa use parsley for additional flavour. I have used fresh coriander (cilantro) instead, which is also a commonly used herb in African cooking, as per my understanding.

10. You can add ready-to-use mustard powder to the Azefa too, but I much prefer using freshly-ground mustard instead.


This post is for the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap group that I am part of. Every month, a bunch of us food bloggers get together, form pairs and cook from each other’s blogs. I was paired with Chef Mireille for the month and, from the hundreds of beautiful recipes on her blog, I zeroed in upon Azefa.

Check out what the other members of the recipe swap group created this month:

Coriander Matar Poha by Mireille| Lemon Rice by Lathiya| Apple Cinnamon Muffins by Ali| Tropical Smoothie by Veena| Sindhi Koki by Pavani| Cream Cheese & Cucumber Sandwich by Jagruti| Black-Eyed Peas & Beets Salad by Usha| Turnip, Beetroot & Radish Coleslaw by Sasmita| Saag Aloo by Sandhya| Burmese Yellow Split Pea Fritters by Debra

I’m also sharing this recipe with Fiesta Friday #267. The co-hosts this week are Antonia @ Zoale.com and Abbey @ Three Cats and a Girl.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


Kadala Paruppu Thogayal| Chana Daal Chutney

We love our chutneys, as I’m sure you would have figured out already from the many chutney recipes already on the blog. Today, I present to you one more type – Kadala Paruppu Thogayal or Chana Daal Chutney.

As a child, I was brought up on a steady diet of various types of chutneys, because I refused to eat my vegetables. 🙂 In adulthood, my love for chutneys only intensified, and I began experimenting wildly with different ingredients and grinding techniques.

The husband grew up with various chutneys in his life too, loving them to bits. Keerai kootu, rice and rasam with different types of chutneys were a permanent fixture on his home’s dining table. So they are in our house today, too.

Chana daal is a sort of binding agent in most chutneys, whereas a vegetable usually is the star ingredient. However, in this Kadala Paruppu Thogayal, chana daal is the primary ingredient. Can you imagine just how protein-packed it would be? A simple dish to prepare, the chana daal makes it super flavourful!

We Tam-Brahms prepare something called Paruppu Thogayal, a delicious chutney made with toor daal that makes for an awesome accompaniment to rasam rice. This Kadala Paruppu Thogayal, though quite similar to the traditional Paruppu Thogayal in a lot of ways, differs from it in a lot of ways too.

I made this Kadala Paruppu Thogayal from Lathiya’s blog recently, and it was a big hit at home. I followed the original recipe mostly, with a few small variations of my own. We are going to be seeing more of this chutney in the times to come – I’m sure of that!

I cooked this dish for Food Bloggers Recipe Swap, a Facebook group that I am part of. Every month, the food bloggers in the group pair up, and each pair cooks dishes from their partner’s blog. What a lovely way to explore food from around the world, right? Mireille, author of The Schizo Chef, who is spearheading the recipe swap group, paired me with Lathiya for this month. I decided on this simple chutney recipe from Lathiya’s blog.

Do check out the way I made the Kadala Paruppu Thogayal! This is definitely something you must try out too!

Ingredients (yields 3/4 cup):

  1. 1/2 cup chana daal
  2. 1/4 cup fresh grated coconut
  3. A 1-inch piece of ginger
  4. A small piece of tamarind
  5. Salt to taste
  6. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  7. 1 tablespoon jaggery powder or to taste
  8. 4 dry red chillies or to taste
  9. 1 sprig + 1 sprig of curry leaves
  10. 1 teaspoon + 1/2 tablespoon oil
  11. 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  12. 2 pinches of asafoetida


1. Soak the tamarind in a little hot water for at least 10 minutes. Keep aside.

2. Peel the ginger and chop it up. Keep aside.

3. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a pan. Add in the chana daal and dry red chillies, and roast them on medium heat till the daal begins to brown. Ensure that the ingredients do not burn.

4. Add the chopped ginger, 1 sprig curry leaves, soaked tamarind (without the water it was soaked in), and grated coconut to the pan. Roast on medium heat for a minute, ensuring that the ingredients do not burn. Switch off gas.

5. Allow the roasted ingredients to cool down completely, and then transfer them to a mixer jar.

6. To the mixer jar, add salt to taste, jaggery powder, and turmeric powder. Add in the water which the tamarind was soaked in. Add in a little fresh water. Grind the ingredients together to a paste, as fine or as coarse as you want it to be.

7. Transfer the chutney we ground to a serving bowl.

8. Heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil in a pan. Add mustard and allow to sputter. Now add the asafoetida and the remaining curry leaves. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds, ensuring that the ingredients do not burn. Switch off the gas. Pour this tempering onto the chutney in the serving bowl. Mix well. Your Kadala Paruppu Thogayal is ready to serve!

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


Do check out the exciting recipes that the other members of the Food Bloggers Recipe Swap have come up with!

Harissa| Chana Daal Chutney| Fresh Green Chana Chaat | Koeksisters|Til Ke Laddu | Pineapple Ginger Bubble Tea| Masala Chai|Ragi, Banana & Dates Smoothie | Roasted Beetroot Hummus| Mamra Upma| Spiced Plantain Chips| Fiery Habanero Pepper Hot Sauce| Sweet Potato Soup

I’m sharing this recipe with Fiesta Friday #263.