The term masala is used throughout India to describe various spice mixtures; garam masala is common in North India (garam means hot).
- 1⁄2 cup ghee or clarified butter
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and finely diced
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1-2 serrano chiles, stemmed and minced
- 1 (1″) piece ginger, peeled and finely grated
- 4 1⁄2 tsp. garam masala
- 2 tsp. ground turmeric
- 1 cup canned chopped tomatoes
- 2 1⁄2 cups dried black-eyed peas, soaked for 2-3 hours, then drained
- 1⁄2 cup heavy cream
- 1⁄2 bunch cilantro, chopped
- Melt ghee in a medium heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, chiles, and ginger and cook, stirring constantly, until onions are soft, 5-8 minutes. Add garam masala and turmeric, then add tomatoes and season to taste with salt. Cook, stirring often, until thickened slightly, about 2 minutes.
- Add peas and 4 cups cold water to pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until peas are soft and sauce is thick, 1 1⁄2-2 hours. Stir in cream and cilantro and continue cooking 10 minutes more. Serve over steamed hot basmati rice, if you like.