Today’s entree recipe is an Indian inspired dish, made vegan! Instead of chicken, we use chickpeas and instead of heavy cream from a cow we use coconut milk.
Coconut milk is the ultimate creamy liquid in vegan cooking and baking. It can elevate just about any dish calling for milk and imparts a lovely mild flavor that begs to be dressed up with spices! So that’s exactly what we are going to do here!
This meal is something I make at least once a week. It’s chock full of flavors! The base is fresh tomato and coconut milk. Coconut milk creates the ultimate creaminess and the tomatoes balances it with acidity.
Garam Masala is the secret ingredient that makes this dish really stand out. I also add a good amount of turmeric for both color and flavor. Just look at that golden color:
Turmeric is great for flavor and color but also is just a wonderful addition to the diet for its health benefits, like its anti inflammatory properties. But the problem is that the body has a hard time absorbing it. Fat and black pepper make the turmeric more bio-available. So here we include both fat (coconut milk) and black pepper to ensure proper absorption.
I use fresh tomatoes for the sauce, but canned can also be used in a pinch. After making this meal many times, I find that fresh tomatoes give a more fresh taste to the final dish. Canned tomatoes are usually more acidic as well, so if you are prone to getting reflux or generally sensitive to acidity, it could help to use fresh instead in your cooking adventures.
When I crave a warm and comforting meal, this is definitely one of my favorites. It leaves me satisfied, nourished, and never heavy. Serve with warm rice or quinoa and my easy vegan cucumber yogurt on the side.
Now that we are into the winter months, this meal would make for a perfectly cozy night in. I hope everyone tries this recipe! If you do, please let me know in the comments! xoxoPrint
A vegan, healthy, tikka masala inspired entree that’s full of flavor! This recipe is simple to put together and takes less than an hour from start to finish. It holds up well in the fridge for a few days and even deepens in its complexity with time.
- 1 onion
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tsp vegan butter (I like I can’t believe its not butter and Earth Balance)1/2 tsp ground clove
- 1/2 tsp coriander
- 2 TB garam masala
- 2 TB water (to make paste with the spices)1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 2 TB turmeric
- 2 1/2 C chickpeas
- 6-8 tomatos (the bigger the tomato, the less tomatoes you need. I would say about 4 cups total chopped)
- 1 can of light coconut milk
- 1 can of regular coconut milk
- Heat a large pot on the stove to medium/high heat and add the vegan butter to melt.
- Chop onion finely and mince garlic.
- Add onion to pot. Stir a few times with a wooden spoon to coat the onion with the butter.
- Once onion becomes translucent, add minced garlic and cook until fragrant and slightly browned.
- sprinkle on coriander, garam masala, and turmeric.
- Cook for about 30 seconds and then add the water. It should stir into a paste.
- Remove from heat and transfer paste to a blender.
- Chop tomatoes into quarters and add to blender. Blend on medium speed until fully incorporated and smooth.
- Add 1 can at a time of coconut milk and blend.
- Transfer mixture back to the pot and turn to medium/high heat again. Once you bring the tikka masala to a simmer, add the chickpeas.
- Reduce heat and cover for about 20 minutes or until chickpeas are tender and cooked throughout.
- Serve with rice and chopped cilantro on top.