In a deep pot, heat the oil and add the sliced onions and cumin seeds. Fry till the onions become golden – about 10 minutes. I managed to burn some of my onions – don’t do this!
Add a big splash of water and all the spices. Continue to cook this until the onions soften and the water reduced to about half
Add the rice, chickpeas and water. You want to have enough water so that when you put your forefinger into the water, when the tip of your finger touches the rice, the water comes to your first knuckle, as shown in the picture below
Cook the rice and chickpeas on high heat, stirring once or twice (but not breaking any rice!) until most of the water has dried out.
Once the water has dried out, secure a tight fitting lid onto the pot and turn the heat down to the lowest setting, to steam for 10-15 minutes. You can wrap the lid in a clean tablecloth so it absorbs more steam, leading to slightly fluffier and less mushier rice.
Allow the rice to rest for 10-15 minutes after steaming, then fluff up before serving warm!