I quite like doing this kind of timed recipe – 15 minute black bean soup, 15 minute pasta primavera, 30 minute saag paneer… Usually when I cook, I do a lot of faffing. I stop to write out the recipe on my laptop, get distracted on Facebook, realise I need to tidy a random corner of the kitchen… things usually take at least twice as long as they need to. But if I’m going to make a 15 minute creamy chickpea curry, I want to know for sure that it can actually be made in 15 minutes (no false advertising here!), so I force myself to focus. And this chickpea curry took me 15 minutes on the dot!
Of course, if you want to make your creamy chickpea curry in 15 minutes, you’ll need to focus too. There’s no extra time allocated for finding your veg in the back of the fridge, searching for your tin opener, emptying the kitchen bin… make sure you have everything you need to hand, and you’ll be well on your way to a quick and easy dinner. I suppose, very roughly, there’s 5 minutes allocated for chopping, 5 minutes for cooking the veg, and 5 minutes for simmering the sauce – but really, you’d be better off doing things more efficiently than that. Get your veg in the pan as soon as you’ve chopped them, for example – your leeks can be cooking while you’re still chopping the mushrooms.
This is just the kind of recipe I would have cooked as a student. It’s quick to make (no need to eat into your studying / drinking time), only uses a straightforward curry powder (though feel free to add extra spices if you have a more extensive collection), and the leftovers will reheat really well if you’re only cooking for one. Serve it with naan bread or pilau rice, and top it with fresh coriander (cilantro) if you’re feeling extra fancy.
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 medium leek
- 1 bell pepper (I used yellow)
- 4 medium mushrooms
- 400 g tin chickpeas, drained (240g, or ~ 1 1/4 cups, when drained)
- 400 g tinned tomatoes (~ 1 1/3 cups)
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 3 tsp medium curry powder
- Black pepper
- 2 tbsp cream (skip for a vegan curry, or use vegan cream)
- To serve: fresh coriander (cilantro) (optional)
Heat a dash of oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Halve the leek lengthwise, slice it thinly, and add it to the pan. Dice the pepper and mushrooms, and add those too. Cook for a few minutes, stirring regularly, until the vegetables are fairly soft.
Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, tomato puree and curry powder, and mix well. Turn the heat up high, and bring to a simmer. Season to taste, and allow to cook for another 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened to your desired consistency.
Add the cream if using, and serve topped with fresh coriander.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose. Information above is for 1/2 the recipe, not including rice or naan bread.