a perfectly rainy, fall day

I love rainy fall days.

I love the intoxicating smells of wet leaves on the grass.

I love running in the rain.  In my shorts.  In 60 degree weather. 

I

I love rainy fall days.

I love feeling water pour through my sneakers.

I do realize, FYI, that this isn’t exactly normal.  But somehow this sensation brings me back to being a little 7 year old, running through puddles and dancing in my bathing suit with my older brother and sister.  I guess that little girl never left me.

But perhaps best of all, I love to come home.  Dry up.  Throw on some comfy clothes.  Blare the country music station. 

Throw on my apron and make dinner happen.

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I see a recipe once on a food blog, I usually make a mental note of it.

When I spot that same recipe twice, I save it to my favorites. 

 But when I see the recipe three (or four!?!) times, I throw up my hands in surrender and I make it. 

While there seems to be a lot of steps to making Channa Masala, it’s actually quite easy to make.  This dish came together in 30 minutes, start to finish.  The rice–which took 40 minutes–was the most time consuming part of the entire meal.  😉

Here are a few things to keep in mind while making it…

(1) Despite what people tell you, you can use dry ginger in place of the fresh.

If you have the fresh stuff, use it.  You’ll notice a difference.  But if you’re like me and don’t happen to have any fresh ginger in supply, this will work out just fine.

(2) Always test your jalapeno peppers before using them.

A wise person once told me that not all jalapenos are made equal.  Some will be ‘burn-your-mouth’ hot, and others will be as mild as a sweet bell.  You really have to taste a small peice to see what you’ve got. 

Today, mine was x-tra spicy, so I deseeded and only used half. 

…oh yeah, and always cut the spicy jalapenos small.  Especially if you’re sensitive to heat like me. 😉

(3) Know when to use real butter.

There are times when olive oil makes a wonderful substitute.  Most times, actually.  But then there are times when only real butter will do.  This was one of those times.

(4) Learn patience.

I have a hard time with this one.  I would cook onions in a minute if I could.  But you’ll get the sweetest, most mouth watering onions, when you practice your patience and let them cook.  Slowly.

(5) Measure out your ingredients ahead of time.

This saves you the stress of trying to throw random spices in at a minutes notice. 

(6) Have fun!

I consider this to be the most important step.  Never overlook it. 😉

I served the Masala over brown rice and topped it with the squeeze of a fresh lemon.

A side of kale chips was set out in the middle of the table.  Completely up for grabs by any and all.

Today really was such a perfectly rainy, fall day. 😀

Channa Masala—(serves 4)
as seen on Eat, Live, Run

  • 2 15 ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 inch knob ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 2 tbsp butter

In a large cast iron skillet, heat the butter. Once melted, add the onions and cook for about 15 minutes on medium low heat, or until golden brown.

Once the onions have caramelized, add the garlic, ginger and jalapeno and stir well. Cook for about two minutes or until it starts to smell like heaven on earth.

Add the tomato paste and pince, using above photos as an example. This is very important and if you don’t do it right your dish is pretty much doomed. No pressure.

Add the coriander, cumin, cayenne and tumeric and stir well. Then add the diced tomatoes, chickpeas and garam masala.

Cook for about five minutes or until the chickpeas have heated through. Finish with a squeeze of lemon and top with plain yogurt and cilantro if desired! 

Question: Rainy fall days—yay or nay?