1 tbsp of the home-ground garam masala spice mix (see box-out)
30g fresh coriander
1 onion, cut to rounds
Soak the chickpeas overnight in a large container.
Boil the chickpeas in the same water along with black cardamom, onions, black tea leaves, salt and baking soda. Cook covered on low heat until soft; add water in between if required (avoid stirring the chickpeas while cooking).
In a separate pot, heat the vegetable oil and sauté the ajwain seeds, ginger-garlic paste and coriander powder, followed by the tomato purée. Cook until it thickens. Transfer the cooked tomato masala to the boiled chickpeas and add the tamarind pulp. Cook on low heat and discard the tea leaves from the chana masala. Adjust the seasoning with lemon juice and salt, and then add 1 tbsp of the garam masala mix. Mix gently and sprinkle the fresh coriander and onions on top. Cover and set aside for 10 mins before serving. Cover the pot and rest the chana masala for 10 mins before serving with white rice or roti.