Whether eaten as a snack, main meal or even for breakfast, this tangy chickpea curry aka chana masala, (Give this chana masala recipe a try) is hands down the best comfort food. Period. While most Indian households have their own take on the classic chana masala recipe, there’s something about this dish that makes one want to lick our fingers each time, it may be your mom’s recipe or neighbour’s. Not too time consuming, chana masala does call for certain detailing but the payoff is worth all the effort—one spoonful of a well-made chana masala (Click here to learn how to make restaurant-style chana masala) and the palate tingles with tangy, spicy flavours that do a little dance. Many of us end up cooking a lot of it because the family loves it. So what do you do with the leftover? Don’t bin it or just reheat, turn your leftover chana masala into an entirely new dish.
Chana Masala Sandwiches
Use last night’s leftovers to make your next morning’s breakfast. Stuff it between bread slices. Before that, reheat and reduce the gravy to leave it semi-dry so you don’t end up with a soggy sandwich. You could also throw in a few veggies, raw onions, and chopped capsicum to reduce the gravy. Go easy on seasoning as your chana masala is already spice heavy. You can also further jazz up your sandwich by adding a few cheese slices. Toast your brand new chana masala sandwich with a little butter, oil or ghee on both sides and serve hot with some spiced chutney or sauce.
Chana Masala Pizza
Slather your pizza base with a generous amount of chana masala and top with veggies of your choice. For a non-vegetarian option, simply add some shredded chicken or meat and top with loads of cheese. Remember, the cheesier, the better. Bake as you normally would or cook on a tava or pan till the crust turns brown. Once done, sprinkle some more cheese and serve hot. You could also substitute the pizza base with a kadak chapatti for a desi pizza version.
Chana Masala Burger
Make your own fusion burger patty by combining whatever ingredients you’ve got at hand along with your leftover chana masala. Take the help of a blender or hand processor to mash your chana masala into a smooth paste. Into this paste, fold in mashed potatoes or finely chopped veggies of your choice. If your mixture is too dry, you might want to throw in some eggs or add more gravy from your chana masala. If too wet, simply add in some breadcrumbs and mix well. Divide the mixture into equal portions and shape into medium-size patties. Shallow fry or bake your chana masala burger patties until golden brown. Next, spread a spoonful of some chutney or sauce, whatever you prefer, on the inside of your toasted burger bun. You could layer your burger with some thin cucumber and tomato slices along with lettuce leaves if needed. Last, place your chana masala patties at the centre of the bun and top with some cheese slices before covering with the other half of the bun.
Chana Masala Tacos
Give your Mexican tacos a desi twist and enjoy the best of both worlds. Make sure your gravy is semi-dry or dry before filling it into your tortillas. Additionally, you could throw in a few slices of onion, jalapenos, tomatoes or any other veggies of your choice along with sauces or chutneys for a burst of flavours. You can also throw in some pre-cooked paneer, tofu or chicken for a meaty element. Combine all ingredients well before filling into your tortillas. Garnish with some lime juice and enjoy your desi chana masala tacos while on the go.
Chana Masala Pasta
Say no to store-bought sauces and instead use your last night’s leftover chana masala and fix yourself a warm bowl of desi pasta. Make sure you’ve blended the chana masala to a smooth paste so that there are no chunks before combining it with your pasta. You can add a few veggies to make it an even healthier affair for kids. Non-vegetarians can add some shredded chicken or sausages any other meat of their choice. If your kids love cheese, be generous with that block and watch them gobble down your desi pasta with chana masala sauce in no time.
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