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The Rich Heritage of Punjabi Cuisine: Chhole Dhania Masala

Updated: Jun 18

Chhole Dhania Masala
Chhole Dhania Masala

Punjabi cuisine has a rich heritage spanning many millennia of gastronomic artistry. This cuisine is a melting pot of many influences ranging from Persian and Central Asian culinary practices to North West Frontier Province recipes and rustic North Indian cooking styles.

The traditional chefs of Punjab were (and continue to be) masters in the art of using Mustard Oil alongside a rich palette of spices and locally grown ingredients to create flavours and dining experiences that dazzled foodies all over the world.

The recipe that we will be exploring today is one that exudes ethnic charm in every whiff of its delightful aroma and in every mouthful of its deliciously warm flavour that is sure to satiate the yearnings of your taste buds. This is a traditional Punjabi dish called Chhole Dhania Masala.

Here are the ingredients that you will require.

Ingredients for Chhole Dhania Masala

  1. Chickpeas (Chhole): 100 grams

  2. Bengal Gram (Chane): 50 grams

  3. Coriander (Dhania) Leaves: 1 small bunch

  4. Onion: 2, medium sized

  5. Green Chillies: 2

  6. Mustard Oil: 6 tablespoons

  7. Cinnamon (Dalchini): One half-inch piece

  8. Black Cardamom (Ilaichi): 1

  9. Cloves (Laung): 5

  10. Cumin (Jeera) Seeds: 2 teaspoons

  11. Coriander (Dhania) Seeds: 1 teaspoon

  12. Garam Masala: Half a teaspoon

  13. Red Chilli Powder: Just a pinch

  14. Dry Mango Powder (Amchur): Half a teaspoon

  15. Ginger (Adrak) Paste: 1 teaspoon

  16. Garlic (Lasun) Paste: 1 teaspoon

  17. Black Peppercorns: Half a teaspoon

  18. Ghee: 2 tablespoons

  19. Salt: to taste

The quantities mentioned above are for serving four persons. Adjust the quantities proportionately to suit the number of servings that you require.

Preparation for Chhole Dhania Masala

Soak the chickpeas and the Bengal gram in separate bowls and leave overnight. The next morning, drain the water and mix the chickpeas and Bengal gram in a pressure cooker. Add salt and cook for five whistles of the cooker.

Wash, peel and slice the onions.

Grind the coriander leaves and green chillies into a paste.

In a frying pan, dry-roast the cinnamon, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, black cardamom and cloves. Then grind the roasted spices into a coarse powder.

Grind the black peppercorns into a coarse powder.

Method for Chhole Dhania Masala

Heat three tablespoons of Mustard Oil in a pan on a Medium flame. Add the onion slices and sauté till the onion turns golden brown in colour.

Add the ginger paste and garlic paste to the pan and continue to sauté for another minute or so.

Next, add the roasted spice powder along with the dry mango powder, garam masala, ground black peppercorns and the coriander-green chilli paste. Mix well and sauté for another three minutes.

Now add the remaining Mustard Oil to the pan along with the chickpeas and Bengal gram. Add around 100 millilitres of water and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the flame to Low and let the mixture simmer for around five minutes. Adjust the salt, if required.

In a small steel bowl heat the ghee. When it melts, remove the bowl from the flame and add the red chilli powder. Pour the ghee and red chilli powder mixture over the chickpeas and Bengal gram.

Your traditional Punjabi Chhole Dhania Masala is now ready. Serve it hot. This dish is usually eaten with Puri or Roti.

You can find more recipes at :

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