Mama’s Punjabi Recipes – Dus Minit De Chole (Ten-Minute Chickpeas)


If you have the craving for some Punjabi-style chole, with the dark coloring and thick gravy but are put off by the time that it takes to make them, then this recipe is for you. It’s an easy way to make this chole recipe – also called Kabuli chole – in just ten-minutes and still enjoy the taste.
The Punjabi chole differ from those that you find in many restaurants in which the chickpeas are yellow with the haldi (turmeric) and are floating in a red curry. Instead, this recipe makes chole with a darker color, thicker curry and a satisfying garam masala after taste, and can be sprinkled with chopped coriander leaves and is delicious with plenty of garnishes like raw onions, achaar (pickles) and with long, spicy green Indian mirchen (chilli peppers).
India is the world’s largest producer of chickpeas, also called garbanzo beans and there are two common varieties: desi, grown mostly in South Asia, Ethiopia, Mexico and Iran and kabuli grown in Southern Europe, Northern Africa, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Chile. Chickpeas are high in protein, polyunsaturated fat, zinc, folate, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and calcium.
Usually, making chole (also known as channe) requires advance preparation to soften the hard bean and improve the taste in either of two ways: you can place the chole in a pressure cooker and boil them or you can let the chola bean soak overnight in a bowl of water and then boil them in the pot. Either way is time consuming and requires cleaning several utensils. This recipe reduces that work altogether and is ready in ten-minutes so that you can quickly enjoy eating chole with your favorite breads.

400 gm can of chole (chickpeas)
1 tablespoon of vegetable or olive oil
1 tablespoon amchoor (dry green mango powder)
¼ teaspoon loung (powdered cloves)
½ teaspoon garam masala
Spices (to taste): namak (salt), mirch (red pepper)
Garnishes (to taste): pyaaz (onion) – peeled and finely chopped; tamater (tomato) – soft ones are best, chopped, dhania (coriander) – chopped leaves

1. Open the can and run the chole through a strainer, saving the water in a cup.

2. Pour in a tablespoon of oil into a saucepan and heat up well. Throw in some lal mirch (red pepper) and stir. Do not add salt as it is already in the saved water that will be reused later.

3. Throw in the chole and then mix well with the pepper and oil over medium heat, making sure that the chole do not stick or burn.

4. Now pour in the saved water and bring the chole to a boil. Slightly mash some of the chole with a large spoon.

5. Add in the amchoor, clove powder and garam masala to bring in the authentic medium brown color and spicy tanginess and mix the ingredients well.

6. Turn the heat off, cover the pot and let it sit for 5 minutes. Eat with roti, naan, kulche or bathure.



Nothing can be more frustrating than having to reheat leftover rice in the microwave and having it pop and snapple and then come out hard, whether you are having Indian or Chinese food. There is an easy way to make the rice come out as soft as when you first made it. It works best when the leftover rice is still in the saucepan it was made in, but works quite well otherwise too. Place the rice in the saucepan, now sprinkle it with a small cup of water, cover the pan and let it cook over medium heat for five minutes. Now uncover the pan and stir the rice, which will be soft and fluffy again.

mamas recipe inside3

Shakuntla Malhotra is a skilled cook of Punjabi dishes made in the old-fashioned style that she learnt as a young woman in her ancestral home in Lyallpur, India before it became part of Pakistan after the Partition in 1947. People have often admired her cooking for its simplicity and taste that comes with each mouthful. Even in her mid-eighties, she continues to cook daily and agreed to share some of her delectable Punjabi recipes.