- 2 cups packed baby spinach (about 2 ounces)
- 1 jalapeño or serrano pepper, seeded, deribbed, and roughly chopped
- ¼ large yellow onion, roughly chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 ¾ cups water, divided
- 1 ½ cups long-grain brown rice, preferably basmati, rinsed
Chickpea Tikka Masala
- 1 tbs minced fresh ginger
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbs ground coriander
- 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- ¼ tsp ground cardamom
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 28-oz can of whole tomatoes or diced tomatoes, with their liquid
- 1 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
- ¾ large yellow onion, finely chopped
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas
- ¾ cup canned coconut milk, plus more if needed
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
- In a food processor or blender, combine the spinach, jalapeno, onion, garlic, olive oil, salt, and ½ cup of the water. Blend until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into a medium saucepan, reserving the food processor or blender bowl for later.
- Add the remaining 1 ¼ cups water to the pan and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
- Add the rice, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook on a low simmer until the rice is tender and has absorbed all of the liquid, about 45-50 minutes. There will be a layer of green on top, so you’ll need to take off the lid and check underneath with a fork to be sure it’s done. (If the rice has absorbed all of the moisture but is still a little crunchy, add a couple more tablespoons of water and cook for a few minutes longer.)
- Once the rice is done, remove the pot from the heat and let the rice steam, covered, for 10 minutes.
- Fluff the rice with a fork, stirring the green on top back into the rice, and season with additional salt if necessary (approx. ¼ teaspoon more).
Chickpea Tikka Masala
- Pour the tomatoes and liquid into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.
- In a large, nonreactive skillet or Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and salt. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add the ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the ground spice mixture (coriander, cumin, turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, and cayenne) and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the pureed tomatoes, chickpeas, coconut milk, and cilantro.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, about 20 minutes.
- Season the tomato mixture with additional salt until the flavors really sing (approx. ¼ teaspoon more). If necessary, add another splash of coconut milk to mellow the spices.
Bringing it All Together
- To serve, spoon the rice into individual bowls and top with the chickpea masala.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro.
Variations & Notes:
- Serve with warm whole-grain naan.
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