Garam masala chickpea stew

By using chick peas and the Indian cheese paneer, Matt Tebbutt provides lots of protein in his spicy vegetarian dish
By Matt Tebbutt
Garam masala chickpea stew
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes plus overnight soaking
  • Effort: medium


  • 250 g dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in lots of cold water
  • 5 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh root ginger
  • 3 green chillies, sliced, removing the seeds for a milder taste
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 5 tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves, plus a few small sprigs to finish/garnish
  • 1 tbsp fresh root ginger, cut into julienne strips
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2-3 tbsp whole garam masala, such as East End Spices garam masala mix
  • 250 g ready-made paneer, cut into 2cm cubes
  • 1 tsp garam masala


1. Drain and discard the soaking liquid from the chick peas. Put the chickpeas and a small pinch of salt in a medium saucepan with 1 litre of water, then simmer gently for about 45 minutes or until the chickpeas are tender. Drain and reserve the cooking liquid.

2. Heat the 3 tablespoons of oil in a wok, tip in the onions and fry until golden brown, then stir in the garlic, chopped ginger and chillies. Heat the cumin, coriander and mustard seeds in a small, heavy-based, hot, dry pan for a few minutes only, until they are toasted and starting to smell fragrant. Crush the toasted spices using a pestle and mortar or grind in a small electric spice grinder. Stir into the pan with the chilli powder and turmeric. Finally add the tomatoes, coriander leaves and the reserved liquid from the cooked chickpeas, along with the chickpeas and some salt to taste. Cook for 20 minutes. Stir in the julienned ginger, lemon juice and coriander.

3. Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Place the crushed garam masala on a plate. Roll the paneer cubes in the spices. Pierce toothpicks at one end of the paneer cubes and place them in the pan. Fry, turning the paneer cubes frequently so that they are cooked on all sides until evenly golden brown. Remove the toothpicks. Serve the paneer with the chickpeas and garnish with coriander.

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