Monday, April 27, 2009

Kadala (Black Chickpea) Curry

Kadala Curry is a dish from Kerala, the southwestern Indian state known for its drop-dead gorgeous backwaters and its amazing food full of cocout. I ate this last night at a fabulous Keralan restaurant in Hyd and couldn't get enough of it . . . it was amazing with appam (Keralan dosas) and paratha, but would also be fan-tabulous with rice.

This recipe is courtesy of "Live to Eat" at

2 cups Kadala (black chickpes), soaked overnight
1 cup sliced onions
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
1 cup fresh/frozen grated coconut
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
2 cardamom pods
3 cloves
1 star anise
5 whole black pepper
salt to taste
1/4 tsp oil

To Garnish
1/2 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp sliced shallots
a few curry leaves
1 dry red chilly
Mix the soaked kadala with sliced onions and turmeric powder. Add water to cover the kadala and cook till soft (or pressure cook for about 15 minutes).

In a shallow pan, heat oil and add cardamom, cloves, star anise & black pepper seeds and fry for a minute or two.

Add coconut and fry till brown.

Add red chilli powder & coriander powder and fry on low heat till brown.

Dry grind the fried ingredients in a spice grinder. The oil from the coconut will help form a smooth paste of all the ground ingredients.

Add this paste along with salt to the cooked kadala. If there isn’t enough water in the kadala, add a cup or two and mix well. Bring this to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes till the gravy is thick.

To garnish, heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds. When the seeds start to splutter add shallots, curry leaves and red chilly and saute till brown. Pour this over the cooked kadala.

Serve hot with puttu or appam or steamed rice.

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