Peach and chickpea curry, 22p [VG/V/DF/GF]

This is my favourite curry, my go-to, easy but perfect comfort food. I used to make it with turkey, but any protein source will do – so feel free to chuck a fistful of whatever you fancy in with the onions if you want to bulk it out or extend it.

Serves 2 for dinner, with leftovers for a light lunch.

250g canned chickpeas (drained weight)
1 onion
1 fat clove of garlic
1 chilli
a splash of oil
1 rounded tsp cumin (ground or seeds)
1 x 400g tin of peaches (or apricots or mandarins)
1 x 400f carton or tin of chopped tomatoes
a handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped
1 stock cube, veg or chicken

First drain your chickpeas and rinse them vigorously to get rid of the stagnant water that they’ll have been sitting in. Pop them in some fresh water in a saucepan and boil rapidly for 10 minutes to soften (and get rid of any toxins…there’s differing beliefs about toxins in canned pulses and I’m of the ‘a good boil won’t hurt them’ school of thought…)

Meanwhile, peel and finely chop the onion and garlic, and chop the chilli. Pour a little oil into a medium, heavy bottomed pan, and add the onion, garlic and chilli, then the cumin, and cook gently on a low heat for a few minutes to soften the onion. Don’t be tempted to turn the heat up – burned onions will permeate your whole curry, whereas sweating them will add a delicious sweetness.

Drain the peaches, reserving the juice, and chop into small pieces. Add to the onion mixture in the pan, along with the reserved juice. By this time, the chickpeas should have finished boiling, so remove them from the heat and drain them, and tip them into the peaches-and-onion pan.

Pour the chopped tomatoes in, add the coriander, and crumble over the stock cube, then stir everything together. Reduce the heat to a low setting, and cook gently for 30 minutes. You may need to add a cup of water to the sauce if it starts to get a bit thick. Stir well, and serve.

‘Peach and chickpea curry’ recipe from A Girl Called Jack by Jack Monroe.

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  1. I love your recipes and i’ve been looking for a good veggie curry. Thanks. I would also be really grateful if sometime, when you have time to post about your window herbs. I’ve had some before and they tend to die, go limp etc. any tips would be ate fully received.

    • Hi Julia,
      I tend to re-pot mine when I get them as I find the tiny supermarket pots aren’t adequate if you want them to go again. I put them in bigger pots and put big stones in the bottom to allow water runoff so they don’t get soggy and mouldy.
      I also shake as much of that cheap soil off as I can when I repot, and pop them in compost, usually £1 or so for a bag from Wilkinsons. I hope this helps! I always put mint in the biggest pot I can find as it grows like wildfire, and rosemary too.
      The only one I seem to have a problem with is coriander, it’s a bit temperamental. Greek basil seems to be indestructible! 🙂

  2. looks yummy, will be giving that a go later this week I feel 🙂 Although will cheat with tinned chickpeas cos that’s what I’ve got, or maybe even butter beans as on special in tesco at moment, and I love them almost as much as chickpeas 🙂

  3. Looks *very* good, Jack – thanks, will try it out.

    Just, oh, by the by – there was a letter to your school cookery teacher? The link doesn’t appear to work … and can’t find it on your site. Just me being …. not clever enough to find it?

  4. This sounds fantastic! What a delicious-sounding and hearty meal. And perfect during this blasted chill that seems to refuse to leave the UK.

  5. I made this for dinner tonight. It was delicious! I added chicken to mine, as had some to use up. I had thought I’d made enough for tomorrow, but my housemates and I all had seconds – a rare thing in our house!

  6. Had a little panic this morning, tax credits have been dropped by £170, we are a working low income working family of 6, the only place to ‘find’ the difference is in the food budget, so after a few tears Ive decided to use you as my inspiration and stop feeling sorry for myself. Thank you Jack and best wishes to you and the small boy. x

    • Hi Amy,
      I’m sorry to hear this but glad to be of some use. I’ve been contacted all morning by people who have seen their tax credits cut with no warning – I don’t know what’s going on but am dreading my next lot 🙁 I have no corners left to cut! X

  7. im dreading the changes to tax credits too i shall know more next thursday. I hate this time of year because all the new bills come in and they always go up but the income doesn’t go up to match. This is my 7th year of juggling bills around one wage.

  8. Cooked this last night. Didn’t have any apricots so used peaches instead. Made enough for two days but finished the lot – delicious!

  9. Hi Jack,

    I’ve made two of your recipes this week (this one and the smoked cheese, leek and Savoy pasta); both absolutely delicious (although substituted Cheddar for smoked cheese in the latter), served as great packed lunches the following day and even the little fussy britches liked them.

    All the best,


  10. Go for it, we will be watching on t.v. In the morning. You will be brilliant!!!

    Love from your fans in the I.O.M.

    Deirdre Berriff.

  11. Here’s an idea to save on fuel bills. I soak a whole packet of dried chickpeas overnight and cook them all at once, then freeze them. I put them in a large plastic bag and lay them out in the freezer as much as possible; then when they are frozen I drop the bag on the floor and they become free-flow! I do the same with kidney beans and I’m just trying mung beans. Will be trying your recipes after seeing you on BBC this morning. Thanks for the new ideas.

    • Helen, that is such a brilliant inspired idea! I cooked chickpeas today for this recipe and was thinking its a lot of fuel spent just cooking the chickpeas, so cooking a whole bag in me go the freezing is great fuel saving, and then makes it worth buying dried pulses. I’m definitely going to do this from now on. Hope jack puts this tip in her book as it will definitely encourage people to buy dried pulses then!

  12. I just came across your blog for the first time. You are awesome. I am so impressed by your grace, eloquence and resourcefulness. Well done!

  13. Hilda Masey – re: your comments about Jack never acing experienced real life as she is clearly subsisted and ignorant of real prices. Seriously??!! Have you even read this blog and Jack’s story? I just cannot believe your negativity and condescension, it is simply astounding. This blog is the outcome of someone experiencing extremely tough times and responding to it in a practical way. You sound very bitter.

  14. Good morning Jack.

    Could I ask the carton size of the chopped tomatoes? Could tinned tomatoes or Passata be used instead? Would it be ok to use tinned chickpeas in water if I can’t find dried?

    Looking forward to cooking this!!

    Thank you 🙂

    • Hiya, it’s a 400g carton of chopped tomatoes, tinned ones would be fine as long as they don’t have any weirdy bits added like herbs etc that might throw it all off kilter… Passata would be fine too but I’d use less of it, as it’s runnier.

      • Hi Jack, I’m a newcomer to your site (and an ex Echo employee!)- really love it. One question – would you boil tinned chickpeas prior to usage, or can I just chuck them in the pan? Thanks!

  15. Just cooked this….very tasty indeed!! Slight spicy tingling in mouth and full up. Thank you 🙂

  16. Going to have this for dinner tonight. Your recipes all look amazing. I’ve got to say seeing you on bbc on Saturday was a real inspiration. Good to know I can go to your blog for food ideas when bills and other problems swallow any money I have!

  17. Another beautiful recipe, thank you. I can’t wait for you to publish a book with them all in 🙂
    It was nice to have the leftover apricots for pudding too!

  18. Made this last night. This is the best curry I have ever had! I had it with a bit of cous cous and half a mini coriander naan – yum yum 🙂 Looking forward to your book…

  19. I made this for us tonight (a family of 4) and my son had 2 bowlful a and daughter had 1 (she would have had more…but by the time she had finished there was none left!). It was absolutely delicious!!!

  20. Delicious, thank you! And very best wishes for your continuing struggle. I’m currently on a £3/day grocery budget (including cleaning stuff, etc.) so I’m beginning to think it was a godsend finding you.

  21. I have been so impressed by the experience I’ve had following your recipes so far (ask my friends… I can’t stop talking about it!) my weekly food shop cost was not only slashed but provided me with so much more than a week’s worth of food… I am a veggie (and a poor student) and rely heavily on fresh veg… which is great, but means that my food stock has usually run out about 4 days into the week, this week I’ve barely made a dent in it, I’m going to have a night off your recipes tomorrow and eat up other fresh things in my fridge which are in danger of going off (which never happens) and I have felt satisfied, healthy and full every night that I’ve followed your recipes (I’ve had 2 nights of kidney bean/carrot burger and 2 nights of this delicious curry so far). Can’t wait to select my recipes for next week!

  22. I came across your blog whilst reading the Daily Mail today. I think you’re a truly inspirational young woman. I had, genuinely no idea people (with children) are forced to live like this.

    I feel fortunate of my life, but also very humbled about the amount of food waste we probably have in our house.

    Whilst I can’t promise to try and feed the 4 of us so cheaply, I will definitely be buying your book, I will endeavour to work harder to ensure our food waste is minimal and I am going to investigate donating food to a food bank.

    Good luck Jack. Your little boy has a mummy to be proud of.

    • Now, THAT, made me cry! Sad that people are really so unaware of the plight of others, but wonderfully cheering that once they are made aware (and the press really needs to start telling the truth about this) they are so willing to try to do something about it!

  23. Hi Jack thanks for your recipes, definately going to try this one. Dont know if i can buy supermarket brands though,i would love to be able to go into the supermarket and fill my trolley with all the good priced supermarket brands.At the moment i can usually squeeze a couple into my trolley, any tips for breaking through that phsycological barrier of the feeling everyones looking at me or i might bump into a guy from work or a family member and then those thoughts will run through my head of them thinking that i,m skint and struggling,

  24. I also came across your site reading the mail and feel it is going to be my families god send. We seem to have also fallen on hard times – we don’t look to be badly off but that couldn’t be further from the truth.. I have 9p to feed my family for the next 10 days. I will be throwing together every ingredient I have in my cupboard to fill up by 2 yr old and husband… These recipes might just help us through. Thanks xx

  25. this sounds really lovely, but apart from your shake of cumin it doesn’t really seem like a curry.

      • Hi Jack

        I’ve got all the above spices you’ve mentioned in our cupboards and am planning to make this curry on Wednesday. Is there anyway you could add, in the comments, the quantities of the other spices? We like spicy food in our family!


  26. Well done, you have really inspired me to save some money on my food bill. I am going to start off by trying a couple of your recipes each week. Gonna start with the Jardaloo curry and the Chickpea burgers 🙂

  27. I made this last night & amended the spices. I added 1tsp of both cumin & coriander powder, 1/2 tbsp on mustard seeds & an equal amount of fresh root ginger & garlic (4 tiny cloves). I also had to use dried apricots as I didn’t have any tinned ones so added a bit of Aldis’ white grape & peach juice which we had in the fridge in place of the apricot juice. It was lovely & will be come a regular now. Thanks very much 🙂

  28. This was absolutely delicious. I doubled the recipe. Used two tins of chickpeas (because i didnt have dried) and a dsp of value curry powder instead of chilli. Feed 7 of us with a bit left over for my lunch following day.

  29. Absolutely delicious! I added 1 desert spoon of curry powder, as I don’t have any chillis. Think this will be a regular on the menu in our house from now on!!

  30. I’d just like to say, your recipes are fantastic, and we should ignore all these whingers going on about food prices being wrong etc. Your blog is about how much it cost YOU to make a certain dish, not how much it will cost the person making it! Can’t wait to give this a try, keep at it- I love all the vegan recipes you post c:

  31. In relation to what chris asked Chris there’s nothing like being yourself let “people” Think what they will the least of our worrys should be trying to be perfect the good old image thing lol 🙂

  32. Just had this and it was lovely. I used a tin of chickpeas for two of us and added ground coriander, a teaspoon of the cumin and curry powder. Served it with brown basmati rice and mango chutney. Yum!

  33. I have made this 4 times now, each time adding/substituting something. First, i subbed the chickpeas for kidney beans, the second time i added a handful of red lentils (REALLY delicious addition!), and then the 3rd time i added some chopped up veg (lurking at the bottom of the fridge). Each time it has been delicious!
    I have to admit that i had never considered using tinned apricots in a meal, and the idea seemed slightly..umm..mad (Sorry Jack) when i first saw the recipe. But now its one of my favourite meals. I serve it with home made nann bread, or rice, or cous cous.

  34. Hi Jack, I just read about you on the daily mail and thought I would have a peek at your blog. You are also on wordpress, like me, so I am going to start following you and making some of your recipes, starting with this. I find it quite strange that we have a similar style and our blogs read quite similarly… A kindred spirit maybe? I think your recipes are a lot more frugal than some of mine, so I am going to try some of yours and see if I can save some money. My batch of 20 portion chilli gets a lot of laughs from my housemates and friends, but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do! Living in London on a budget isn’t easy… but it can be if you have a few handy, cheap, delicious recipes up your sleeve and a herb garden growing on your window sill. I do and I LOVE mine. I don’t know where I would be without it. I ventured into writing a few recipes for the ‘below the line’ challenge, but it was very difficult, you really have to shop around. Your blog is inspirational, thank you for taking the time to write it and share it with the world… gems x

  35. I made this last night for myself and the OH and it was absolutely lovely. I was doubly chuffed as the OH is one of those ‘no meat not a meal’ types – but he was stuffed! I added rice and half a na’an bread, and some garam massala to the curry. Delicious recipe! Will be making again 🙂

  36. We had this for tea tonight. My children 3 and 5 years loved it. In fact they love every recipe I have made from your blog which is amazing as normally meal times are a nightmare. Every time I have make one of your recipes they sit still and just eat. We aren’t hard up but we are really inspired by your story and outlook. We are spending more time thinking about what we buy, how we cook it and preventing waste. We are saving money which is great as we can treat ourselves in other ways and can continue to support our local foodbank. Thanks Jack.

  37. Reblogged this on isitjustmewhothinksthisway and commented:
    This young woman is inspirational and I applaud her on every level. However, just wondering why so many of her recipes call for tinned veg and not fresh? I am embarrassed that I do not know the price differential. Am going to find out more about this.

  38. I’ve made this more than once now, and it’s great. Because I live on my own I freeze portions, and I found that the defrosted ones didn’t quite have the same apricot bite and sweetness. So second time round I added Sainsburys Basics Sultanas – 84p for 500g – and their sweetness really complemented the dish 🙂

  39. This is genius! Thanks Jack. I made it at 10pm when back from a weekend trip and had little food in – so mine consisted of tomato soup instead of tinned toms, dried apricots instead of tinned ones, and a very old chill. Was still delicious! Much appreciated 🙂

  40. Can’t believe how gorgeous this dish is, I did it for my dinner last night and can’t believe how yummy it was, I would never have thought of putting apricots and chickpeas together, this is defo one I will cook over and over again.

  41. I “found you” today after hearing you on Radio 4. We’re vegetarians on a budget (and husband doesn’t eat dairy but we can find substitutes) so a lot of your recipes are perfect for us. Thank you. You’re a modern day hero but I can appreciate you probably don’t feel like one especially when times are at their toughest. I am sure many people have found your blog at a time when they felt they had nowhere else to turn and I’m betting you’ve really helped them get something to eat on the table. Absolute best wishes to you Jack.

  42. wow ,just made this for my family, it was delicious, will try making it with beans because my husband has a big painful problem with chickpeas !!

  43. I made this curry with the Turkey Drumstick (yes, the big one) and it’s lovely.

    I have to say that in general with your recipes the quantities are a little small for me. I’m a 6’2″ bloke and although I’m trying to lose weight I still like a decent portion. This particular recipe made two portions for me and when I calculated it out still came in at only 501 kCal per portion. Brilliant! 🙂

  44. Made this last night, although added garam masala, chilli powder and ginger to give it more of a kick.

    You’re right, delicious cold in a pitta bread for my packed lunch today!

  45. Made this tonight, as usual with a few alterations to suit my cupboard (tinned chickpeas because I couldn’t find dried when I did my online shop, chilli powder not fresh, dollop of chilli sauce just in case, curry powder not cumin, fresh apicrots because i had some cheqp ones starting to wrinkle in the fridge, black pepper because no stock cubes, passata not chopped….). Most if not all the recipes on here are fairly quick to prepare and cook but even quick meals like this can be a struggle in our houses as we are always in late after doing our animals and then a child to get to bed. Tonight I cooked the onions and spices and then shoved everything into a le cruset. Lid on and and into the oven at 150 and 2 hours later when we got back the most delicious curry. Yum. I think I need a decent rice cooker now so that we can also put the rice on before we go out to do our animals.

  46. Hiya Jack. I make this a lot and take out the chicken stock and replace it with veggie because I’m vegetarian. I made this tonight and added a dollop of onion chutney to it as well as using onions and it gives it a lovely tangy taste. I thought I’d share it. Keep up the good work, I always feel excited when I see a new recipe.

  47. A bit of cumin and a shake of chilli does not make a curry- it is spicing more akin to middle eastern and Turkish food. Very disappointed by most of your Indian inspired recipes.

    • Put a desert spoon of curry powder in then, like I do. Any recipe can be adapted to suit ones own personal taste. It’s really not rocket science!!!

  48. Looks fab, just got introduced to you by a friend who bought your book, and you are a true inspiration, thank You. you use alot of fresh coriander in your dishes which I LOVE, but am not good at growing it. would you use dried coriander to substitue? if so how much per handful of fresh? thank you again, you have been a fresh air to find!

  49. This is one of the most delicious things I have tasted! My little ones are super fussy – do you think it would still work with a can of baked beans instead of the chickpeas?!

  50. I tried this peach & chickpea curry, and it’s great. Very tasty and easy to make. From the recipe book I regularly make the mushroom stroganoff too. The banana tea loaf has morphed into banana muffins, and I love the mint & courgette fritters.
    The best compliment I can give a cookbook is that I use it, instead of just leafing through and looking at the pictures. Even though the book contains many meat-based recipes it’s still got plenty in for us vegetarians.

  51. Will make tonight. After years of being low meat I had drifted as lil’ boy defines food by meat and anything else that he will avoid. I have been slowly inventing recipes that he will go for, and this looks another great dish to try. Thanks!

  52. Hello there,

    Great recipes!! Thank you so much for sharing these, we are truly inspired!!! We would like to add your to the Top Food Blog list in with over 4 million users worldwide… Your blog is impressively BEAUTIFUL and deserves to be included on the Top list!! We will feature your blog and create shout outs about your recipes to our fan pages.

    MyTaste is a social platform for foodies and blogs/sites owners like you and it helps to reach more people, get more visibility from the web and share/save recipes. Some of them receive at least 10,000 visits from us on a weekly basis.

    If you’d like to be featured, expand your readership and JOIN TOP FOOD BLOGS, here’s the link where you can add your blog to the list>>
    (Joining won’t cost you any cents)

    Kind regards

  53. I just discovered your blog and your lovely recipes! Thank you for sharing them 🙂 I made the curry in my slow cooker, served on brown rice. I also added a couple if extra bits I had kicking around, frozen peas an some sad potatoes. The family and I will be happily eating this over the next few days!
    Thanks again – Julie

  54. Tried this last night. Thought fruit in a curry would be controversial but the flavours work very well (it’s not too sweet) if you add sufficient chilli. Nice one Jack.

  55. Hi Jack, Just made the Peach & Chick Pea Curry for the first time! Delicious! Will be able to get about 4 meals out of what I made! Having Bulgar Wheat rather than rice though! (trying to be healthy!).

  56. Hi Jack, greetings from Australia! I told my boyfriend I was going to make this for dinner yesterday morning to which he was a bit skeptical…anyway he comes in through the door last night and declared that it smelt great, subsequently eating two bowls for dinner.

    I have spices lurking in the cupboard and altered your recipe by adding:

    1 tsp. ground coriander
    1 tsp. black mustard seeds
    1 tsp. yellow mustard seeds
    1 tsp. turmeric
    6 cardamom pods
    1 cinnamon stick
    1 tsp. garam masala (stirred through at the end)

    So, for the people who have complained that it’s not curry-ish enough – give this a go – it tasted wonderful! Well done, Jack!

  57. Have to say, this is really good! So healthy, we’re loving your recipes, hardly spending a penny on food since we found your blog 🙂 Congrats on your success 🙂

  58. Thanks for this. Cash is a bit tight at the moment and this site is a godsend for affordable healthy meals. Thank you!

  59. Delicious! Like a couple of other people above I’ve done this a few times and each time added an extra layer of spice to the dish and any leftover/frozen veg of course.

  60. I cant thank you enough for this one… hit all around. My kids loved it served with rice and naan bread and even my curry hating friend adored it and has planned for me to make it again!
    Added a little gram masala to the receipe to our taste, I doubled up and made a big batch which tasted even better the day after. Cheated with tin chickpeas I needed to use up. Everyone must try!

  61. Can this be frozen? Looking for batch cook recipes I can cook and freeze then preferably cook from frozen. Knee op this Tuesday and my husband will be taking care of me,the kids and working at the same time so want to be prepped!

  62. I currently have a pan of this bubbling away and can tell from the “chef’s taste” that this is going to be a massive hit when I serve it up later! I didn’t have cumin, which was a surprise because I have pretty much everything else… but I used a good couple tsp of garam masala AND some curry powder… it’s going to be nice and spicy and warming on this cold winter’s evening…

    Am serving it with some homemade “naan”… as I found a recipe for a naan made with only SR flour and a tbl of oil… I hope they work, the reviews are quite positive 🙂

    Thanks again Jack, you super lady you xxx

  63. Made this gorgeous Peach and Chickpea curry. Oh my god, it was gorgeous.Only lasted me a day!!! Better than my husbands lamb teggine, which it had a similar taste to. Making it again today. Thank you, you are amazing Jack. Great news on the new book. Xxx

  64. I made this last night, using mandarins instead of peaches as per your suggestion in the recipe and it was lovely. Definitely going to be a regular dish in our house.

  65. Hi, I never have fresh chillis in but always have chilli powder and flakes in the cupboard…how much of either of those should i pop in to get the expected heat, any ideas please? Thanks in advance. Ps i love your recipes, trying to cut our food bill massively at the mo, being vegan makes it a little bit harder sometimes but you have some fantastic recipes

  66. im so annoyed i didnt find this blog when i started uni, now in my final year and discovering these recipes. thank you Jack, really thank you, i wish i had as much imagination as you! this was delicious I have made sure all my friends know about this blog as it saves so much money and has so many good ideas
    keep going!

  67. Hi Jack,
    I just made this curry it was delicious. Used mango instead of peaches as that’s all I had in the cupboard seemed to work. Am going to try to make other meals too.

  68. Absolutely love this curry – it’s a staple in our house. In fact such is my zeal for this dish that nearly everyone I work with has been made to give this a go and has adopted this into their repertoire too! I do find that I have to up the chilli and spices a bit for some more oomf and would also recommend throwing in a handful of frozen spinach for the last 5 minutes of cooking as well for a bit of added depth. Delicious!

  69. Made this for Sunday lunch, I’m vegan, Hubbie is v omni, both LOVED this! So tasty. I confess I tinkered a little as I added some fresh ginger to avoid it going to waste and I used 3 huge garlic cloves (as garlic is my heaven food), BUT, amazing. The peaches were just like mango…. To the extent that I will probably not bother using mango in cooked dishes again and instead opt for tinned peaches 🙂 thank you thank you thank you Jack xx

  70. I had this at a friends house and thought it was so good I got the recipe off her! Absolutely delicious an I normally hate curry!! Thank you for this recipe!

  71. Pingback: Cooking! – M87
  72. Hi Jack! Just wanted to say I’ve cooked this lovely dish for lunch, and it is a total winner. I will be definitely cooking it again. Many thanks for the inspiration!

  73. I had a lot of doubts when I saw this in the pan. My son remarked that it looked a lot like the recipe cards from the 1960s which we used to write spoof captions for. But I trusted you, and despite not liking pulses at all, enjoyed the curry, as did my vegetarian guest (and she asked for the recipe). So… be not of faint heart when you see it sitting in the pan all together for the first time… it IS delicious!

  74. This is my go to meal when I’m either skint or working and need something quick when I get in. I use the peaches with syrup, not as healthy but cheaper and tastier, I tip the lot in. Love it.

  75. This is one of my favourite recipes from the first book. I make loads and shovel it into pittas for lunch too.

    I’ve just received Cooking On a Bootstrap in the post. Really can’t wait to get cooking with it! Thank you. Worth the wait. Xxx

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