Chickpeas are called a super food because of its amazing health benefits. Commonly known as Kabuli Chana in India, chickpeas have become an essential part of Indian food. Though chickpeas have become part of every Indian kitchen, both at home and restaurants, it originated in the Middle Eastern countries. The remains of chickpeas, one of the earliest cultivated legumes in the Middle East region, were found to be about 7500 years old. Indian American botanist Professor Sushma Naithani also considers this area as the center of origin of grams in her research. According to her research, some pottery of the Neolithic period was found in Turkey, in which evidence of gram was found. From there it reached South-Eastern Europe and after that, it gradually spread all over the world.
Meanwhile, the history of chickpeas in India dates back to 2000 BC. In fact, the remains of a gram have been found in one or two areas of Rajasthan, Bihar, Maharashtra, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh in the excavation done for information on the prehistoric era. This period is known from 3000 BC to 800 AD. There is a detailed description of a gram in ancient religious and Ayurvedic texts of India. In the Vedas, the word Khalwa has been considered as a pulse. The description of a gram is found in Hindu scriptures like Markandeya Purana, Matsya Purana etc.
In the Ayurvedic texts Charakasamhita and Sushrutasamhita, which were written before 700-800 BC, gram has been called Chanak. The description of gram has also come in Kautilya Arthashastra (about 300 BC).
According to food expert and home chef Simmi Babbar, gram is considered to be luxurious because of its richness in protein, carbohydrates, calcium, fat, iron, copper, zinc, magnesium, and phosphorus. Moreover, it also contains riboflavin (Vitamin B2) and niacin (vitamin B3)
Hummus, a Middle Eastern dip, made from cooked, mashed chickpeas is one of the most popular dishes. It is blended with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic to enhance the flavour.