Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

Green peas and jalapeño liven up this quick, healthy one-pot dish

Pantries and freezers: They’re the new go-tos during this involuntary staycation. Fortunately, your menu doesn’t need to suffer.

Most ingredients in this dish are things we usually have on hand. The fresh components (such as mushrooms and jalapeños) are ones that keep for a few days, so you don’t need to run to the grocery store too often.

We made this dish for a weeknight dinner. But we would happily serve it to friends for a weekend feast. When we can see friends again.


Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

Recipe: Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

This dish has very little sauce, making it a “dry” curry (as opposed to a saucy “wet” one). Traditionally, dry curries are eaten with an Indian flatbread such as naan or roti, while wet ones are eaten with rice. We like to eat this curry neat, but you could add flatbread to the meal if you like. Or rice. Or even polenta.

This dish takes about half an hour to prepare. The recipe yields 3 to 4 hearty main-course servings.

Leftovers keep for a few days if refrigerated in an airtight container. They’re also terrific for breakfast or lunch.

Ingredients
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1-inch piece of ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves (or to taste; we generally use more)
  • 2 jalapeño peppers (or to taste)
  • ~1 pound mushrooms (portabellas are great in this dish, although ordinary white ones work too)
  • ~2 tablespoons cooking oil (or to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste; see Notes)
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon cayenne (to taste)
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • ~1½ cups frozen green peas (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
Procedure
  1. Peel the onion and cut it into dice of about ½ inch. Set aside.
  2. Peel the ginger, chop it roughly, then add it to the bowl of a mini food processor.
  3. Peel the garlic, chop it roughly, then add it to the bowl of the mini food processor.
  4. Wash and dry the jalapeño peppers. Cut off the stems, then cut the peppers in half lengthwise. Use a teaspoon to scoop out the seeds and white membrane (the oil in these carries much of the jalapeño heat). Chop the peppers roughly (reserving a few rounds for garnish, if you wish), then add the chopped peppers to the mini food processor. Wash your hands with soap and water to remove the spicy jalapeño oil from your skin. Then whirl the mini food processor for 15 to 20 seconds, until the contents form a paste. Set aside.
  5. Clean any dirt off the mushrooms with a damp cloth or paper towel. Cut the mushrooms in half or quarters, depending on their size and your preference. Set aside. 
  6. Heat a large frying pan over medium stovetop heat. When the pan is hot, add the cooking oil. When the oil is heated (about 15 seconds – it’ll shimmer), add the chopped onion. Season to taste with salt, then cook until the onion is soft and just becoming translucent (about 5 minutes). Add the paste of ginger, garlic, and jalapeño, then cook for an additional two minutes.
  7. Add the spices (turmeric, cumin, coriander, and cayenne), then sizzle for 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they begin to brown – about 8 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, drain the chickpeas into a strainer, then rinse off the gunk they’re stored in. After the mushrooms have cooked, add the drained chickpeas to the pan, along with the diced tomatoes. Cook for another 10 minutes. About two minutes before serving, stir in the frozen green peas.
  9. Right before serving, stir in the garam masala. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  10. Plate the curry, adding a slice of jalapeño to each serving for garnish (if desired). Serve and enjoy.
Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

Notes
  • We sometimes finish this dish with a squirt of fresh lemon juice (about 1 tablespoon) – acid helps sharpen the flavor. We stir it in when adding the garam masala in Step 9. 
  • You might want to add chopped cilantro to the dish to give it extra color and flavor (add it with the garam masala in Step 9).
  • We love jalapeño peppers. But if you want a less spicy dish, you could skip them. 
  • Same with the cayenne pepper. That being said, we don’t find this dish particularly spicy. But you may disagree.
  • You can use almost any variety of mushrooms – or a mix of varieties – in this dish.
  • We like to use chickpeas in Indian dishes. But kidney beans work well too. Or you could use lentils.
  • In fact, you can alter ingredients and quantities in this dish to suit your taste, or to fit what you happen to have on hand. You could use potatoes instead of mushrooms, for example (we suggest day-old cooked potatoes cut into cubes). Add bell peppers if you have them around. Or maybe some eggplant (or use eggplant instead of mushrooms). You could also skip the garam masala and instead add ground cloves and whole cardamom pods in Step 7. Loads of possibilities here.
  • Speaking of garam masala: It’s a spice mixture that varies quite a bit from region to region in India (and depending on what brand you buy). It usually includes black pepper, cloves, cumin, coriander, cardamom, and fennel. The best way to use it is to stir it into a dish at the end of cooking, so you can get the full benefit of its fragrant aroma.
  • We use kosher salt in cooking. It’s less salty by volume than regular table salt (the crystals are larger and more irregular, so they pack a measure less tightly). If using table salt, start with about half the amount we suggest. But always season to your taste, not ours.
Mushroom and Chickpea Curry

Magic Mushrooms

“Yum stuff,” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “Pantry pals to the rescue!”

“As we used to put it back in the days when we wore bell bottoms,” I said. “This is good shitake.”

“We still say that, my flower child,” said Mrs K R. “And without being able to get haircuts during social distancing, we’ll soon resemble our 60s selves. Déjà vu all over again.”

“I’ll need a tie-dyed ribbon for my ponytail,” I said. “And I might have to start shopping for paisley shirts.”

“Yup, plus granny dresses for me,” said Mrs K R.

Don’t forget the silly sideburns. Now, why does that make me think of mushrooms again?

You may also enjoy reading about:
Aromatic Yellow Rice
Easy No-Stir Oven Polenta
Cauliflower, Potato, and Pea Curry
Lamb Rogan Josh
Spicy Pork Vindaloo
Spicy Potatoes with Ginger and Garlic
Easy Tandoori Chicken
Indian Carrot Salad with Mustard Seeds
Summer Squash in Tomato Curry Sauce
Or check out the index for more

84 comments:

  1. The curry looks GOOD! Would be nice to soak up the curry sauce with some homemade flatbread...o man..now I am drooling..

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    1. Hi Angie, we LOVE curry! So good, isn't it? Thanks for the comment.

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  2. This is the kind of food that I like to have in my fridge these days. As you said, perfect for leftovers. Stay safe!

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    1. Hi Gerlinde, the leftover are terrific. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  3. John, I'm loving your spin on this curry and I take satisfaction in using up what's on hand. You had me at jalapeno!

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    1. Hi Brooks, we usually do a lot of pantry cooking, but now we're doubling down on that. And yeah, we can never resist anything with jalapeno. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  4. Love recipes like these. So aromatic and using whatever bits and bobs you have in your pantry. However, it is your spice selection that makes this recipe extra special. Take Care and stay well.

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    1. Hi Bobbi, we DO have a well-stocked spice selection. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  5. Replies
    1. Hi R, you'll love it! Thanks for the comment.

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  6. Oh God, what memories! I remember wearing my Granny glasses at Berkeley in the 60s- I leaned over to pick something up and they fell off and the lenses broke. Then Governor Reagan's helicopters flew over and dropped some tear gas on us! Now back to the recipe- I like that jalapeno pepper staring at me in the middle of the dish- gives me some good vibes, man!

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    1. Hi Fran, good vibes are always good. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  7. I've got everything except the garam masala spice, I'll improvise. The curry looks wonderful. I trying to use up everything in our freezer because we are snow birds and will be "flying the coop" from Florida back to Philadelphia in about 3 or 4 weeks. I figure, anything left in the pantry, I can pack and take with! Thanks for the recipe!! will try it!!

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    1. Hi Judee, enjoy. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  8. Great combination of flavors and textures. It looks tasty.

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    1. Hi Pam, it's good stuff. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  9. Curry has become a more frequent dish on our table because it's a good meatless option, and isn't too dictatorial about which vegetables have to be in it. This dish sounds both versatile and delicious!

    be well... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Mae, curry and stir-fry are weekly meals for us these days (sometimes a couple of meals each). Such good flavors! And as you say, so easy to modify with whatever ingredients you have on hand. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  10. A curry served neat LOL good one. I love curry but I have made more suacy ones. Will have to try a dry one now.

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    1. Hi Evelyne, :-) We also make saucy curries, but like the dry ones, too. Thanks for the comment.

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  11. Replies
    1. Hi Denise, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  12. Loving all the colors in your dish! Looks delish!

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    1. Hi Laura, we DO rather like color. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  13. I love the colors of this dish. Lots of them meaning an abundance of healthy goodness. Mushrooms are such an amazing vegetable because it can be incorporated into so many dishes and complemented with a variety of seasoning. Love the seasoning of this dish. Great job John!

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    1. Hi MJ, mushrooms really absorb a lot of flavor. Plus they're good all by themselves! Thanks for the comment.

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  14. KR this curry looks great. Already I am planning what I have on hand and what substitutes I can use for this one. The wonderful thing about curries is that they keep getting tastier day by day. Thanks for sharing this gem of a recipe. Best wishes, Pauline

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    1. Hi Pauline, curries do get better with age! We actually prefer the leftovers. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  15. As chickpeas are amongst my best friends, as I have never used jalapeno peppers in a curry and as I would love to see how a combination of 5-6 kinds of Asian mushrooms would 'do' in your recipe, methinks it will be on my table soonest. Probably with naan or rice, polenta being a little too 'fusion' for me. Thankfully our supermarket availabilities, deliveries and transport being back to near-normal, hopefully permanently, one has more choice in what to prepare . . . .

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    1. Hi Eha, I think a mix of Asian mushrooms would be good. Instead of jalapeño peppers, I'd think a red or green Asian-type pepper would be pretty good (maybe even better than the jalapeño!). Something mildly hot. Thanks for the comment.

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  16. Oh John, this is such a nice and flavorful dish...I will not miss the meat at all...love the big cuts of the mushrooms and a hint of spice...thanks for the recipe.
    Have a wonderful rest of the week!

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    1. Hi Juliana, we love meatless dishes like this that are so full of flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  17. This looks so good, I love mushrooms and curry so this dish is right up my alley :)

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    1. Hi Pat and Dahn, mushrooms are terrific in curries, aren't they? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  18. Mushroom and chickpeas sounds like a great combo. We never tried this combo before. This recipe is on my list now.

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    1. Hi Priya, it's a terrific combo -- well worth checking out. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  19. Super yummy, quick and so healthy. This is a brilliant combination, thank you John, stay safe and happy quarantining.

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    1. Hi Merryn, isn't this nice? And incredibly tasty. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  20. lots of great flavours here KR. yep our pantry and freezer are getting a workout lately. the things we find tucked away...

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    1. Hi Sherry, we keep finding things tucked away too! Kinda fun, isn't it? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  21. Love any type of curry, so aromatic and full of flavours! Looks really yum☺

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    1. Hi Natalia, it IS yum. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  22. I love having mushrooms in a curry, they have such a nice flavour and texture. Really like the sound of this and all the veg in there too!

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    1. Hi Caroline, when we conceived of this dish we weren't really thinking vegan, but that's the way it turned out. Nice veggie feast. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  23. Love the mushroom-hippie stuff! You crack me up...The curry looks amazing and, as I just did my two week shopping, and did not get mushrooms, I’m going to try this with dried shiitake mushrooms. I bet it worked just fine!

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    1. Hi David, dried mushrooms should add tremendous flavor. Sounds like a terrific idea. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  24. Mushroom and chickpeas go hand in hand and such lovely pictures. Worth reading the post. I'm bookmarking your recipe for my next chickpea dinner. Thanks

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    1. Hi Hasin, don't the flavors of mushrooms and chickpeas blend so nicely? Love that pairing! Thanks for the comment.

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  25. I still wear paisley! Does that qualify me for a bowl of your curry? GREG

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    1. Hi Greg, it certainly does! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  26. All the spices in this would really make it sing! I can't really live without fresh fruit, vegetables, and proteins, so we combine grocery trips with mail order goodies. Trying to figure it out as we go and slowly get back to normal.

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    1. Hi Laura, cooking is a bit of a challenge at the moment but we're doing pretty well. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  27. That looks so scrumptious and tasty!

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    1. Hi Sam, it is, it is. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  28. A great curry recipe. I prefer dry Indian curries with roti myself, but polenta sounds darn intriguing. No shitake, John this looks to be a fine meal...

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    1. Hi Ron, polenta sounds weird with curry, but it really works. Well, we think it does. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  29. Love this! I could probably eat curried shoe soles, but instead I'll opt for this vegetarian beauty! Love the jalapenos on top.

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    1. Hi Mimi, LOL! I love curry so much I might be tempted. But I'd rather have this. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  30. This sounds wonderful. I could eat this as is, for breakfast in an omelet or even stuffed into bell peppers. I love these flavors.

    I hope you and the Mrs. are staying safe and well.

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    1. Hi Vicki, this would be interesting stuffed into bell peppers -- like that idea. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  31. I think I'd love this with flatbread and rice. I wouldn't want to miss a single bit of that curry flavor. :-) ~Valentina

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    1. Hi Valentina, when it comes to curry, we're members of the clean plate club. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  32. Pantry meals are definitely the best, blogging helps document them too! Your dish is lovely, fresh bright flavours, we’d definitely go for the fresh cilantro!
    Eva http://kitcheninspirations.wordpress.com/

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    1. Hi Eva, pantry recipes are actually how we cook most of the time. Good stuff, huh? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  33. Replies
    1. Hi Josiah, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  34. I think we all welcome the versatility of this dish right now, in how it can be changed up with whatever veggies we have on hand. No matter what you add or subtract, the irresistible curry flavor shines through brilliantly.

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    1. Hi Carolyn, we love versatile dishes! Great way to clean out the refrigerator. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  35. Your mushroom is so firmly cooked to perfection! What a lovely dish for weeknight dinner!

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    1. Hi Sam, good, huh? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  36. Now this is interesting, I never had used mushrooms on curry and I bet this would be really good! Thanks for the recipe

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    1. Hi Raymund, mushrooms are terrific in curry! Wonderful flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  37. This is such a tasty one pot no meat dinner idea. Those jalapeño peppers are such a fun way to kick up the flavor!!

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    1. Hi Heidi, those peppers are great -- we love their spicy flavor! Thanks for the comment.

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  38. Ah yes, the magic mushrooms! Colorado was trying to make them legal. Don't know what happened with that. In the meantime, I guess this delicious dish will have to suffice!

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    1. Hi Abbe, this dish is pretty magical all by itself. No "extras" required. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  39. This is such a different looking curry dish and it sounds really delicious!

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    1. Hi Amy, different kinda describes us. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  40. This looks so good. A nice change from my usual chickpea curry.

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    1. Hi Balvinder, definitely different. And good. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  41. This kind of one pot dishes are my go-to meals now given the limitation on what I can stock up. Love the fact this curry is vegan - something i see myself doing more and more. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Hi Yi, we love meat, but actually cook vegan quite a bit -- several times a week. Just 'cause we like it. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  42. A good curry is one of our favorite things eat, John. I love this vegetarian curry recipe. This is such a versatile recipe, lots of veggies could work in this dish. I completely agree that chickpeas are amazing in a curry and I add them into ours often. Yum, now I'm craving curry LOL Great recipe!

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    1. Hi Marcelle, we make this basic recipe a lot, just change up the veggies. Although chickpeas are our favorite in this sort of dish, kidney beans can also work quite well. Thanks for the comment.

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