Cholia Pulao – Chickpeas are popular among all parts of the world however, most people are familiar with beige colour chickpeas, popularly known as garbanzo beans (Safed or Kabuli Chole). Green chana or green garbanzo, most commonly known as Cholia or green chana is entirely different from its counterpart. It is fresh and green. You can also find dried green chickpeas but it is obvious that the fresh tastes the best.
Cholia / green chana is available in North India when fresh crops of these chickpeas are harvested. Vendors sell long branches (actually entire bushes) of choliya plant to which these pods are attached. Each pod contains one or two seeds.
Its a bit tedious work to remove every single legume from its pod, but while we were younger my Dadi used to put us to work of shelling these. Some used to find their way to the pan to be cooked and while others used to get routed directly into the stomach. 🙂
But, choliya are a delight to unshell. The greyish-green pods are like a bubble wrap, so if you enjoy popping those bubbles, then you will love shelling fresh green chickpeas. The pods are puffed up with air and give a delightful popping sound when squeezed, which is how you shell these chickpeas.
I hardly ever see the bunches of choliya now, but what we do get are deshelled choliya in a plastic packet and that too readily at my neighbourhood farm-to-fork kiosk in the city of Gurgaon. If not of popping the pods, the joy of eating choliya continues.
CHOLIA PULAO AND WHAT ALL? VARIATION SUGGESTIONS ARE HERE
The two most popular dishes, apart from eating raw choliya are aloo cholia subzi and the second is a cholia pulao. This is the recipe I am bringing to you today. The cholia puloa is quite nutritious and actually quite delectable. Cholia Pulao brings together a whole lot of vegetables with rice and makes it into a very healthy meal. If you simply pair it with a raita, your lunch or dinner is all done.
Cholia as a Snack – Its real delight to eat raw green chickpeas as a snack seasoned with some lemon juice, salt and black pepper. Really simple Eh!
Cholia as a Salad – Any vegetable salad with go well with cholia. The freshness of the resulting taste is valuable as well as nutritious. Or, you can even turn it into Hummus – simply replace Kabuli chana with cholia.
Cholia is readily available nowadays, so why not grab a pack and turn your lunch or dinner into a health-packed affair with a green chana pulao or cholia pulao for the entire family.
Cholia Pulao Recipe or Green Chana Pulao - Green Garbanzo Rice
- 1 Cup Rice
- 2 Cup Water
- 1/2 Cup Cholia Deshelled
- 1 piece Onions Medium
- 1 Inch Ginger Finely minced
- 1 piece Potatoes Medium Cubed
- 2 piece Green Chillies Finely chopped
- 1 piece Tomatoes Roughly chopped small
- 1 Teaspoon Garam Masala Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
- 1/2 Teaspoon Fennel Seeds
- 1 Teaspoon Kasoori Methi Hand Crushed
- 1 Tablespoon Ghee You can use your preferred vegetable oil
- Get your ingredients ready.
- Shell the cholia or green garbanzo unless you bought them shelled.
- Clean and soak the rice for 30 minutes.
- Heat about one tbsp of ghee, and add whole cumin and fennel seeds, a healthy pinch of dried fenugreek leaves, and sauté until the spices are fragrant.
- Then, add one medium onion sliced thin and a 1-inch knob of fresh ginger minced fine.
- When the onions began to brown on the edge, add one teaspoon or so of garam masala powder (typically a pulao would have whole spices but since we are not using any, this is a simple way out).
- Once the garam masala is slightly fragrant, added the chopped tomato and mix well.
- Next, add salt, potatoes and the shelled cholia.
- Mix well and cook till the tomatoes just began to soften.
- Add rice and gently fry it for a minute or two and then add 2 cups of water.
- Let it come to a rolling boil, then reduce the heat to low.
- Let the rice simmer till done.
- Fluff the rice with a fork before serving.
- Cholia pulao is ready. Serve it with a raita and chutneys of your choice.
A FEW THINGS TO NOTE
- GO VEGAN – Use the same recipe with a vegetable oil instead of ghee.
TO SUM IT UP
This cholia pulao has a fresh spring-like, earthy taste of green chickpeas, making the dish a perfect, one-pot meal for hot days. Cholia is rich in folate, antioxidants, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, protein, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium and several phytonutrients and hence are highly beneficial for your family’s health.
If you like this recipe, you can let us know in the comments below or on social media using #gosumitup and tag me @gosumitup. I am always happy to read your feedback and if you liked the dish 🙂
And, keep visiting for more of such awsomeness.