Ashley and I survived a trip to IKEA over the weekend. And survived is not an exaggeration. We made it through the entire store without getting into an argument. I think we deserve a medal. I don’t know what it is about that place, but we somehow usually end up in a squabble – minor or major – by the end of the trip.
I think IKEA is actually a lab where they study couple compatibility. In fact, that’s probably where John Gottman does his research. It’s a perfect setting. It’s crowded and chaotic. Couples have to work through problem solving (“No, that won’t fit in our place. Unless we throw out your ugly chair…”), communication (“I really hate that lamp you just put in the basket.”), negotiation (“Okay, you can keep the chair if you put back that lamp.”), and finances (“Um, how did we just spend $400?!”). If you can make it through that place on good terms, you’re good for life.
It also helps to come home to a nice dinner together. You know, after you lug all that furniture up two flights of stairs into your apartment while not tripping over your cat. And then assembling everything using only an allen wrench. Even when the directions call for a drill.
Chana masala is the perfect fix in a situation like this. It’s not only quick and easy to make, but it’s delicious, healthy, and very filling. Plus, who doesn’t love garbanzo beans smothered in a spicy tomato sauce? That’s definitely worth a trip to IKEA – fight or no fight.
Adapted from Food.com
1 Tbs vegetable oil
2 medium yellow onions, finely diced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1/2 tsp fresh ginger, minced
1 tsp ground coriander
3 tsp ground cumin
dash of cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 – 12 oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 cup vegetable broth (or water)
4 cups cooked chickpeas (or 2 cans, rinsed and drained)
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garam masala
freshly-ground sea salt to taste
1/2 lemon, juiced
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for two more minutes. Turn the heat to medium-low and add the cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, ginger, and turmeric. Stir for a few minutes, then add the can of tomatoes (with liquid). Cook for a few minutes, then add the chickpeas and broth (or water).
Add the paprika, garam masala, sea salt, and lemon juice. Cover, and let simmer for 15 – 20 minutes.