My love of Indian food began when Allison's good friend Ashik presented me with a cook book as a Christmas present. He knew I loved to cook and since he was often around at dinner time, I think he was hoping I might try some of the recipes. Roy claims he doesn't like Indian food, but this is one dish he says is yummy. I didn't find it in Ashik's cook book though. The inspiration came from Jamie Oliver's book Food Revolution. He recommends using Patak brand curry pastes as a quick and easy way to make curries. They definitely speed up the process and the results are delicious. Using black rice is a nice change of pace. Besides adding a ton of nutrients, it's nutty flavor pairs really well with the chick peas. Of course, white rice could be substituted and cooked chicken could be added if an additional source of protein is desired.
Ingredients for Four Servings:
1 (15 oz.) can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 medium onions
bunch of fresh cilantro, leaves and stems
1 small pepper such as a Serrano or jalapeno
1 thumb sized piece of ginger
2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1/2 cup of store bought curry paste such as Patak brand
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup uncooked black rice
Plain yogurt and wedges of lime or lemon for serving
While assembling the curry, cook the black rice according to the directions on the package. Peel the onions and thinly slice them. Wash and chop the cilantro up, stems and all. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin from the ginger and dice it up. Decide how much of the pepper to use and remove the membrane and seeds, then mince it.
Over medium low heat, saute the onions, cilantro, ginger, and pepper in the oil until they are tender. Add the chickpeas and curry paste. Mix well and simmer for about 5 minutes.
Stir in the coconut milk and turn the heat down to low. Continue to simmer for 10 more minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve with the black rice, wedges of lime or lemon, and a dollop of plain yogurt.