hara chana

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Also Known as
Green chick peas

Fresh green chickpea is tasty winter fare! Its sweet nutty flavour makes it one of the most popular seasonal treats in India. Fresh green chickpeas are roundish, beige to light green in colour. They look, feel and taste like a fresh vegetable.

Boiled hara chana
First wash the green chickpeas thoroughly in cold water until water runs clear. Then soak it overnight. To cook it, place the hara chana in a vessel and cover completely with water. Add salt to taste, and cook it with the lid on. Once cooked, remove from the heat and drain the excess water. It can also be cooked in a pressure cooker. The cooking time depends on one’s choice and the use of the hara chana, whether it is needed firm or soft. Boiled hara chana can be enjoyed just like that, hot or warm or cold. It can also be tossed in butter with minimal spices, or used in chaats and subzis.
Soaked hara chana
First wash the green chickpeas thoroughly in cold water until water runs clear. Then soak it overnight in a bowl full of water. Soaked hara chana can be used to make delightful dishes like Green Chana Masala or just steamed and tossed in butter to be relished as a snack.
Sprouted hara chana
Wash the hara chana and soak it overnight in sufficient water in a flat-bottomed container. Then, drain the water and keep the chana aside. Take the flat-bottomed bowl or saucer, line its bottom with a wet 100% cotton washcloth. Spread the soaked chana on the cloth. Take another similar cloth and cover the chana. If the cloth is large enough, the same cloth can be folded over the chana, to make a bundle-like arrangement. Keep the container in a dry, dark place. You kitchen cupboard is an ideal place. After 12 hrs, sprinkle some more water on the cloth to make sure it is moist. Once the chana has sprouted to the desired length, you can remove and use it as required in the recipe.

How to Select
• Look for green, shiny and pliable pods; beans should fill pods well.
• Avoid pods with signs of drying.
• When buying shelled chana, choose plump beans with green to greenish-white skins.
• Avoid the ones with brown blemishes or shrivelled skins.

Culinary Uses
• Hara chana can be made into exciting salads and chaats, combined with other veggies and fruits.
• It can be eaten raw or roasted.
• Sauté some in butter or olive oil to soften a little, add a dash of spices of your choice, and enjoy as a simple snack.
• Toss it into stir-fries, sautés, and salads.
• Combine with corn and sometimes green or red bell pepper to make exciting dishes.

How to Store • Refrigerate in a perforated plastic bag for up to three days.
• Store shelled beans, tightly wrapped in plastic, in the refrigerator for up to three days.

Health Benefits
• Green chickpeas have a wealth of nutrients like energy, protein, calcium and iron.

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