Cooking in the Time of COVID – Chana Masala

Instagram Post 4/17/2020

👨‍🍳 Cooking in the Time of COVID 👨‍🍳

(Click on any image to view it in high resolution.)

Rifling through the pantry to avoid going out shopping, I unearthed a long forgotten bag of dried chickpeas. I decided to use some of them to make Indian Chana Masala because it’s really easy to prepare, I had most of the spices and aromatics on hand, and I needed a break from spending so much time on the elaborate culinary experiments I’d been attempting while sheltering in place. A proper sidekick would be basmati rice, a neighbor to the chickpeas on the shelf (and ultimately on this plate) – also really easy to prepare.

But then I hit upon the misguided idea that parathas would be a perfect accompaniment and “really easy to prepare” went right out the window. Kneading and resting and rolling and ghee-ing and coiling and resting and rolling some more…and a day and a skillet later it was ready for its closeup.

Actually, they turned out pretty well – check out this somewhat bungled attempt to demonstrate pulled-apart steaming-hot flaky layers. (Licking ghee-covered fingers helped.)

Well, at least that jar of tamarind-date chutney that’s been hiding in the back of the fridge since forever won’t suck up any more of my time.

Assuming I can get the lid off…. 😬