Vegan Bunny Chow

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Our chicken bunny chow is a show stopper, but the truth is that the lunch breaks of the Durban Indian are often an entirely vegan affair. The critical part of this dish is the loose and punchy sauce that is absorbed into the bread. The oozing spiced bread then becomes the focus and the chickpeas/garbanzo beans are along for the ride.

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 white onions, finely diced
  • 5 cm/2 inch piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • tsp chilli powder
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 large Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 cm/¾ inch chunks
  • 400 g/14 oz canned chopped tomatoes
  • 2 x 400 g/14 oz cans chickpeas/garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tbsp strong Darjeeling tea
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp caster/granulated sugar
  • 1 small mango, peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 200 g/7 oz spinach, washed and roughly chopped
  • 1 small bunch of fresh coriander/cilantro, roughly chopped

Method

  1. Put the vegetable oil in a large heavy saucepan set over a medium-high heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and fry until they turn brown and fragrant, then add the bay leaves, onions, ginger and garlic and fry for 8 minutes until the onions are soft and dark brown.
  2. Add the garam masala, cumin and coriander and cook for 2 minutes, then add the chilli powder, ground turmeric, chopped potatoes, tomatoes, chickpeas, Darjeeling tea, salt and sugar and simmer gently for 20–25 minutes until thick and tangy. Add the fresh mango and simmer gently for 5–10 minutes until the mango softens a little.
  3. Finish by stirring through the shredded spinach leaves and chopped coriander.