Wait until you taste this delicious and truly easy Vegetable Curry with Chickpeas. I promise you’ll be making it again and again.
Christmas is almost here, folks, and this past weekend Desi, Jay and I finally got our act together and finished trimming the Christmas tree. It looks rather handsome with all of those ornaments that bring back great memories– the tiny little embroidered purse that was a favor from my dear friend Margo’s wedding shower. The little red and gold sombrero from Tlaquepaque, a bright, bohemian little town within the city of Guadalajara, Mexico. The miniature blue-and-white china clogs from Delft in the Netherlands. An orange bell from Kashmir in India.
It may be tradition, but killing so many trees for Christmas each year just feels heartbreaking to me. For years, Desi and I made do with an artificial one, but Jay simply wanted a real tree this year, and for once — just this once– we are giving in. The plan next year is to plant a tree outside that we can decorate with lights, and trim the artificial tree inside with ornaments. Jay is happily on board with the idea, so all’s good.
I dreamed up this Vegetable Curry with Chickpeas the other day with just half an hour to get dinner on the table. That’s right– that’s just how long it takes to make this, and if your knife skills are better than mine (which they probably are), it will take you even less time.
All you need to do here is chop up some veggies, and they can be any kind, really, as long as they are not veggies that take an hour and a half to cook. I used carrots, sweet potatoes, potatoes, green peppers and green beans. In the end I stirred in some scallions because I love their raw, sharp bite in this sweet curry.
This is a truly versatile recipe: add cubes of tofu or tempeh for an extra protein boost. Or use cauliflower, broccoli, any squash — summer or winter — even eggplant or mushrooms, and peas. Greens like spinach, chard or watercress are great in this. And here’s a secret that will cut cooking time down even more: use frozen. Yes, frozen veggies will do wonderfully in this curry, and imagine how easy your life will be if all that dinner involves is chopping up an onion, crushing some garlic, and then opening a bag of frozen veggies, a can of chickpeas, and another of coconut milk.
This is a very child-friendly recipe too: the sweetness of the sweet potatoes is intoxicating in the sea of creamy coconut milk. And the crisp carrots along with the al dente green peppers make for a happy, vibrant mouthful.
Serve this Vegetable Curry with Chickpeas on some steaming hot rice or quinoa. You’ll be back for seconds for sure.
- 1 medium onion diced
- 4 cloves of garlic crushed into a paste
- 1 inch large sweet potato diced into 1/2 cubes (no need to peel)
- 2 inch medium yellow or red potatoes diced into 1/2 cubes
- 1 large carrot sliced into thin rounds
- 1 large green bell pepper diced
- 2 cups of green beans chopped
- 3 spring onions or scallions green and white parts chopped
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 4 pods of green cardamom slightly crushed
- 1/4 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 1-2 cups of vegetable stock or plain water
- 1 14- oz can of chickpeas drained and rinsed
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 2 tbsp minced coriander leaves for garnish
- 1 tbsp curry powder or substitute with sambar powder
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- Salt to taste
- Heat the oil. Add the cardamom and saute for a minute until the pods start to color slightly.
- Add the onions and saute over medium heat until they start to sweat and turn translucent. Add the turmeric, cayenne and garlic and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
- Add the sweet potatoes, potatoes, and carrots. Season with some salt and cover the pan. Turn the heat to low and let the vegetables cook about five minutes. If the vegetables start to stick, add some water.
- Now add the green beans and green peppers and 1/2 cup of water or vegetable stock. Cover again and cook five more minutes.
- Check to see if the potatoes and sweet potatoes are cooked. If they are not, continue to cook, covered, for a few more minutes.
- Stir in the chickpeas, curry powder and another cup of vegetable stock. Bring the mixture to a boil.
- Add the coconut milk and scallions and just let the curry heat through without coming to a boil. Turn off the heat.
- Stir in the lemon and coriander leaves and add more salt if needed.
- Serve hot with rice.
More vegetable curries from the archives:
Vegetable Korma, a south Indian style veg curry.
Navratan Korma, a luxurious blend of vegetables and nuts.