Chana Batata

NewImageA friend of mine phoned to say she was coming for a cup of tea and a chat. Since it was almost lunch I decided to make Chana BatataChana translates to chickpeas and Batata means potatoes.  This is a wonderful combination and a great one pot meal.  I rinsed the potatoes and put them in a pot to boil and started cooking the chickpeas.  By the time my friend arrived my dish was ready.  I asked her to pick up a bag of chips on her way as they are a great accompaniment to Chana Batata.

Chana Batata is also known as Aloo Batata .  Aloo also translates to potatoes.  In East Africa we used to have this as an after school snack or a snack  between shopping.  There were lots of small cafes that served chana batata, snacks and Chai (Indian Spice tea) or fresh Passion Fruit Juice.  You can also get Chana Batata as street food in Indian and Pakistan.  Chana Batata originated in India.


  • 14         oz Can Chickpeas
  • 4           med russet Potatoes
  • 2           tablespoon Vegetable oil
  • 5           Curry Leaves
  • 1/4        teaspoon Jeera  (Cumin seeds)
  • 1/4        teaspoon Rye (Mustard  seeds)
  • 1/4        teaspoon Methi (Fenugreek seeds)
  • 1           small Tomato
  • 1           Jalapeno
  • 2           tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • ¼          teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 1           teaspoon Salt
  • ½          teaspoon Citric Acid or
  •  2          table spoon lemon Juice
  • 1           tablespoon Sugar
  • 4           cups Water


  1. Boil the potatoes with the skin on until soft(about 15 min) Peel the potatoes and cube it 3/4 inch.
  2. Chop the tomato, Jalapeno and half the cilantro in a food processor.
  3. Heat the oil, add the rye, methi, cumin and curry leaves.  When the rye starts to pop add the tomato mixture, turmeric powder, salt, citric acid, sugar. Cook for a couple of min.
  4. Add the Chana and mix well. Let it cook for 2 min. Add 4 cups of water and the potatoes, cover and cook on medium heat for about 10 min. The sauce will become thick.
  5. Sprinkle chopped cilantro before serving.

Serve with potato chips, mogo chips or chevro and Tamarind Chutney.

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