Bohra HomeCooked Vegetarian

Chana Bateta – Black Chickpeas and Potatoes – Dawoodi Bohra Style

September 10, 2016

If you have been following me on Instagram you would know that I cook a lot of dishes from my native community – Chitrapur Saraswat Brahmin. And, you must also know that I am married to the love of my life 😀 who is a Dawoodi Bohra. When we got married – I must be honest – it took me a while to get into the groove and understand the traditions involved in being a Bohra. I must also admit that I’m still not where I must probably be after 4 years of marriage. But I’m in a happy place. I have a beautiful family, and the community has a beautiful history of food that I am extremely enthusiastic about and keen to explore.

Ever since we moved to Dubai, its been a challenge to ensure that the husband is fed with his favourite delicacies from HIS native cuisine. I pester my mother-in-law for recipes every other week and keep searching for different recipes across the board belonging to the community. Some of the classic dishes – that I have prepared – are the Dal-Chawal-Palidu, which is prepared on auspicious occasions; Kaari Chawal – the husband’s (and mine) favourite; Mutton Biryani (quite a fail the only time I tried it); my mother-in-laws Kebabs; and this Chana Bateta recipe.

Chana Bateta – is pretty much a dish that is made at home and has taken to the streets. Bhendi Bazaar in Mumbai, which is quite famous for its street food, (read about it here), has a guy whose chana bateta my husband swears by – complete with a fried garlic tadka. The one we make at home is quite similar – except I haven’t tried the fried garlic bit yet. The first time I try any dish, is the time I follow the recipe to the ‘t’ (at least in terms of the ingredients. That’s what I did with this.

 

The recipe I’ve used is the traditional Chana Bateta recipe used in any Bohra household. The end result must be a combination (riot of flavours, if you must) of tangy, sweet, spicy and savoury. The tanginess comes from the Tamarind water (or chutney), the sweetness is contributed by the jaggery. Another flavour that sets this recipe apart from any regular Chana (Chickpeas) recipe is the addition of a considerable amount of coriander powder. Topped with minced onions and lime, this is the perfect evening snack! Some people also like to add spicy coriander chutney and sweet yoghurt as a garnish. But this recipe is sans that!

Print Recipe
Chana Bateta - Black Chickpeas with Potatoes in a Tangy-Spicy Sauce
Quintessential Bohri street food...
Course side dish
Cuisine bohra
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Garnish
Course side dish
Cuisine bohra
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Garnish
Instructions
  1. In the oil, add in the methi seeds, curry leaves and ginger-garlic-green chilli paste.
  2. Once fragrant, put in the onions and saute till light golden. Now, add the tomatoes, and cover till the tomatoes and onions become one mushy masala.
  3. At this point, add in the dry masalas - turmeric, chilli, cumin, coriander. Stir on a medium flame till the raw smell of the spices goes and the oil leaves the sides of the pan.
  4. Then, add the potatoes and mix well till it is coated in the masala. Cover and cook till the potatoes are at least half cooked.
  5. Now, put in the besan - this adds flavour and helps thicken the liquid. Sift it into the masala base and mix well till it is well incorporated and the raw smell of the besan goes away.
  6. Finally, add the cooked chana or chickpeas with the water and stir well. Add the salt and cover till it is cooked and reaches the desired consistency. Stir occasionally.
  7. At this point, put in the tamarind and jaggery and mix well. If you dont have either and have some sweet and sour tamarind chutney, use that instead.
  8. Taste - adjust the salt, sweetness and tanginess (it should be balanced) and serve garnished with coriander leaves, minced onions and lime. And, like the vendor in Bhendi Bazaar - feel free to add a tempering of minced garlic in ghee - nothing tastes better than some added garlic on the top!
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5 Comments

  • Reply Shweta May 1, 2017 at 20:04

    I am so glad I tried this… What a lovely taste the chickpea flour gives the dish! I didn’t add fenugreek as I didn’t have any.. In a rush, I also ended up boiling the potatoes, so I added them just after chana, still I had a beautiful thick masala base with chana.. I almost finished a bowl full of it 😝.. Keep it up 🙂

    • Reply riotofflavours May 12, 2017 at 23:19

      Thank you Shweta! Yes – it is so yummy!

  • Reply Shweta May 1, 2017 at 20:08

    What a lovely taste and consistency Chickpea flour gives it * is what I meant 🙂

  • Reply Nafisa Trivedi October 6, 2017 at 06:37

    Hey, you took me to my birth mohalla, where every other day would be a chana bateta treat, at miniscule cost. Again, every varas would be thooli chanabateta treat. It’s grt u have mastered the bori style of cooking and love it. I am a little different, but the same, in a way that I am bori married to a gujju, some 36 yrs ago, and when through the same happy ordeal of learning gujju dishes, left right and centre.
    I also make all our bori foods too, which my family relishes. It’s a bliss to merge any two cultures, and have the best of both the world’s.
    Loved your recipe. Today I am making chana bateta for children and thought, lemme see if Google has it. And here, I was pleasantly surprised. Your recipe is bang on.
    God bless.

    • Reply riotofflavours October 8, 2017 at 16:23

      Thank you so much aunty, for your wonderful comment. You literally made my day – both hearing your stories and for the comment on the recipe. <3

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