Chickpea And Potato Curry – Low Cost, Easy Family Meal
Simple, warming and tasty – and of course low cost – describes this chickpea based curry supper which has been one of the favourites in our household for many years. It is also one for people who don’t think a meal is a meal without meat – they may hardly notice its absence! You can adapt this meal too to add a bit of cooked chicken or left over roast beef or lamb.
Although this dish is essentially vegetarian, you can make it with some cooked chicken or some beef or lamb mince, if you prefer
Tinned Or Dried Chickpeas?
Although I generally believe in cooking meals from scratch, there are potentially two exceptions in this recipe.I have used tinned chickpeas rather than cooking from dried.
Dried chickpeas are undoubtedly cheaper but they must be soaked and boiled before use. The best approach to this is cooking a few hundred grams at a time and then dividing them into portions and freezing them. There are times when I do this and I would recommend it.
However because this website is about easy and quick cooking as well as about cost – using tinned chickpeas is much better than being put off by the long soaking and boiling method – but the choice is obviously yours.
Curry Paste Or Spices?
The other exception is that sometimes I use curry paste – from a jar. I like it because it gives you a basic curry flavour and then you can add your own extras according to your taste – but it gives a great starting point. You can of course just use the spices you like in the recipe, or use a curry powder as a base. If you want to be really quick you can even just use a bought curry sauce!
Experiment until you get the taste you love. Using curry paste means you can get a great curry flavour, without having to be a curry expert. Please feel free to make your own recommendations or reveal your favourite combination of spices in the comments box below.
A ‘Two-Pot’ Meal’
This is essentially a ‘two-pot’ meal, with one pan having two uses. The potato is best par boiled (ie cooked a little) before it goes in the curry. Potatoes are variable things when it comes to cooking time and it is annoying having uncooked potato in your curry, when everything else is ready! The potatoes are cooked until they are just beginning to soften. The same pan can then be used for the rice. The rest of the meal is cooked in one large frying pan.
My Favourite Rice
I nearly always use basmati rice as I prefer the flavour. And I get the ordinary rice – not the easy cook – as it has much more flavour. It is pretty easy to cook. It is best to wash and rinse the rice first before cooking. For further information see How To Cook Rice in my How To… section
Low Cost Meals With Chickpeas
If you prefer to have some meat content, add some cooked meat at the same time as the chickpeas, or cook some small pieces of uncooked chicken or some lamb or beef mince, with the onion, then proceed as per the recipe. This will clearly make more servings, but then leftovers often taste even better after a couple of days in the fridge!
Chickpea and Potato Curry
- 1 large potato
- 225g / 8oz basmati rice
- 1 onion
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
- 2x400g/14oz tin chopped tomatoes
- 3-4 dessert spoons curry paste
- 1x 400g/14oz can chickpeas, drined
- 55g / 2oz frozen peas
- 150ml vegetable stock
- Place the potato cubes in a saucepan
- Cover with boiling water and simmer for about 10 minutes until starting to cook, but not soft
- Drain and set aside
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan
- Add the onions and cook for a few minutes until soft
- Add the garlic
- Add the chick peas and potatoes
- Add the tomatoes and stir thoroughly
- Add the curry paste
- Add further spices, if desired, to taste
- Add the stock
- Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes
- Meanwhile, rinse out the saucepan
- Put the rice in the saucepan
- Cover in cold water and swirl the rice with your hand
- Drain off the water – a sieve is useful for this
- Put the rice back in the saucepan and cover with boiling water to about 1 cm above the rice
- Bring back to the boil, stir and simmer for 15 minutes or until soft and the water is absorbed (without further stirring)
- Place the peas in with the chick pea curry mix
- When the rice is ready, serve out with the chick pea curry sauce
- Serve as it is or with some nan bread and mango chutney or Apple Chutney
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This recipe was first written in September 2011 but has been reviewed and updated in June 2014