hara chana
Last Updated : Feb 11,2021

What is hara chana, green chick peas? Glossary | Benefits, Uses, Recipes with hara chana, green chick peas |
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Also known as
Dried green chick peas

What is hara chana, green chick peas?

Green chick peas is a legume of the family Fabaceae. Generally, hara chana refers to the dried version of green chick peas, which is available all year round. It has a greenish colour, and a rough outer coating. Unlike fresh green chickpeas, the dried ones need to be soaked before cooking, and also take a longer time to cook. Hara chana is tastier than kala chana or kabuli chana as it acquires a slightly sweet taste when cooked. It can be used to make various recipes like cheela, sabzis etc.

Boiled hara chana
First wash the green chickpeas thoroughly in water until water runs clear. Then soak it in water overnight. Next day drain it. To cook it, place the hara chana in a vessel and cover completely with water. Add salt to taste, cover with a lid and pressure cook it for 3 to 4 whistles. Once cooked, remove from the pressure cooker and drain the excess water. 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 sabzis.
Soaked hara chana
First wash the green chickpeas thoroughly in water until water runs clear. Then soak it in water overnight. Next day drain it. Soaked hara chana can be cooked and 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
First wash the green chickpeas thoroughly in water until water runs clear. Then soak it in water overnight. Next day drain it. Spread the soaked and drained chickpeas on a colander or a sieve and cover with a moist muslin/cotton cloth. Alternatively use only wet muslin cloth and bundle it up. Let the chickpeas sprout over a period of 10 to 12 hours. If you have used a muslin cloth and if the cloth seems dry, sprinkle some water over it. Moderate warmth, water and air are very essential for proper sprouting. Do not keep the soaked seeds closeted. Ideally, room temperature is best for growing sprouts. When the sprouts have grown to the desired length, open the muslin cloth, rinse them again, drain well and then put them in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator.

How to select hara chana, green chick peas

• Choose from the variety of packet sizes available in market, as per your requirement.
• Ensure the packet is sealed properly and check the expiry dates as well.
• Choose uniformly-sized and nice green coloured chana, devoid of white or dark spots and holes.
• If buying from bulk bins, make sure the bin is closed and clean so as to ensure that the hara chana is devoid of dust and other particles.
• Make sure that the hara chana is devoid of any debris like stones and pebbles.
• The chana should be dry, and not show any signs of moisture or wetness.

Culinary Uses of hara chana, green chick peas in Indian Cooking

• Boiled or sprouted hara chana can be made into exciting salads and chaats, combined with other veggies and fruits.
• It can also be used in a variety of curries and vegetable preparations.
• It can even be used to make recipes like cheela and sabzis.

How to store hara chana, green chick peas

• Store the hara chana in a clean, dry and air-tight container.
• Some people add four to five mercury pills per kilogram of the chana to improve its shelf life. In such a case, it may last for even six months. But remember to remove the mercury pills before cooking. They are harmful.

Health benefits of hara chana, green chick peas

Hara chana is a good source of protein as well as carbohydrates. Green chickpeas are also rich in B-vitamins, which help your body use carbohydrates, protein and fat from food. Even more impressive, half a cup of green chickpeas provides one-third of the magnesium and phosphorus needs and about one-fifth of the iron needs daily, supporting your bone, blood cells, muscles and nerve function. Like other beans, hara chana is rich in dietary fibre. The fibre in the chana helps stabilise blood sugar levels and give you a feeling of satiety. Thus it is suitable for weight loss, diabetes and heart disease.

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