Shoor Nakhood (Sour Chickpeas)

by Christi Qazi / January 5, 2016


  • Two to three good sized white potatoes, cut in half (you may choose other potatoes depending on your taste, or budget; Russets are a good choice, but the larger the potato, the less you need)
  • ½ cup thoroughly washed, roughly chopped scallions, (the entire scallion including the green parts). Note: Gandana can be obtained during certain times of the year and washed thoroughly, chopped and frozen to use in recipes like these.
  • 1 small to medium bunch of roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh, finely chopped garlic
  • 1/3 cup (or slightly more) of a good white wine vinegar. Do not use cheap vinegar, Heinz has a good quality, reasonably priced vinegar.
  • ¾ tsp. salt (may be adjusted to taste, however, the salt is an important ingredient and if need be, a salt substitute can be used)
  • Ground black pepper to taste (optional)
  • Approx. 22 oz chickpeas, (can use canned chickpeas about 1-2 cans)Note: you can buy dried chickpeas, wash then soak them in water for an hour and either cook them in a regular sauce pan or in a pressure cooker until they are soft, however store bought cans of chickpeas are just as good and cuts down the time it takes to prepare this. Reserve the liquid in a separate bowl in case you need to adjust the liquid level or decrease the acidity.


Boil the potatoes until they are soft all the way through. IMPORTANT: do not overcook the potatoes or they will be too mushy. You just want to cook the potatoes until a knife can easily go through the potato but not break it in half. Cooking time depends on size and type of potato used. Drain the potatoes, and when they are cool enough to handle, skin them and cut them into small cubes. (about ½ in by ½ in.)

At the same time the potatoes are boiling, combine the scallions, cilantro, garlic, vinegar, salt and pepper into a mixer. This is not meant to be a chutney so your cilantro and scallions are chopped before they go into the blender. Lightly pulse the blender/food processor 2-3 times just to incorporate all of the ingredients together. This is when you should take a spoon and taste for salt and acidity. If need be, make the adjustments to increase or decrease either as you like.

Empty the chickpeas into a colander, rinse and drain. Put the chickpeas and the potatoes into a bowl, pour on the contents of your blender, and gently fold the ingredients together, so as not to break the chickpeas or potatoes. Some people like this hot, however for the very best result, (and the way this side dish is more commonly served), let the shoor nakhood come to room temperature. Cover and sit in the refrigerator for at least an hour, (I prefer overnight) to let the flavors develop. This is a great side dish to almost every entrée and can be easily prepared ahead of time.

Finally, as long as you use only a clean spoon and glass, or Pyrex container to store the shoor nakhood, it can be stored in the refrigerator for at least a week.

Back to Afghan Cuisine Homepage