Chickpea Sundal, a savoury snack from Tamil Nadu, flavoured with south Indian tadka of mustard seeds, curry leaves, hing and freshly grated coconut. Served best as an evening snack with a hot cup of chai.
I have been fairly successful in making F fall in love with some of the Tamil food that I grew up eating. From my pottukadali chutneys, mutton biryani, vegetable kurma, paniyaram, etc. to Sri Krishna's sweets and Vijay movies!
But, I truly never expected him to like Sundal. So, if you haven't tried any sundal, start with this chickpea version, I bet you will make it on repeat.
Growing up in Coimbatore means we don't have the classic "Sundal on the beach" situation like in Chennai but we always received "Golu" sundal from friends and neighbours. Btw, some folks (including mine) call this "chundal"!
What is Sundal?
"Sundal" or Chundal is a savoury dry snack ubiquitous in all of South India especially across Tamilnadu and Andhra. Made with soaked legumes or pulses, seasoned with mustard, chillies, curry leaves, ginger and coconut.
Though this dish can be made with almost all legumes and pulses, chickpeas are the most sort after ingredient. You may find this being sold as kondakadalai sundal.
You can eat Sundal all year be it hot summer's day or even on a cold winter's evening because they are a nutritious and satiating mid-day breakkie or tea-time snack.
- chickpea: You can start with dry chickpeas soaked overnight. For quicker option, you may use canned chickpeas. Recipe includes steps cook dried chickpeas.
- coconut oil
- mustard seeds
- urad dal (optional)
- asafoetida (hing)
- curry leaves
- dry red chilli
- ginger (optional)
- onion, diced finely (optional)
- green chillies, chopped
- grated coconut
- Lime or lemon juice (optional)
How to make it?
If you have cooked chickpeas in hand, you can make this nutritious snack in a bowl in less than 10 minutes.
Decide what sundal you plan to make and soak accordingly. Most legumes need to be soaked overnight and pulses need to be soaked for at least 30 minutes.
If you are into sprouting, I guess it is even better. Rinse the soaked chickpeas thoroughly and pressure cook with enough water and salt for 4 to 5 whistles on medium flame.
Hint: Adding salt while cooking the legumes helps in preventing the chickpeas from getting overcooked and becoming mushy. We need them to hold shape to make a perfect sundal.
Next, get started with tadka. In a pan, heat some coconut oil, splutter mustard seeds, urad dal, asafoetida, curry leaves and dried red chilli. You may add some ginger and onion but that's optional. I love to add ginger and onions most of the time.
Stir in the drained chickpeas and fry until just warmed.
Finish off with freshly grated coconut and coriander leaves if you like. Serve with a squeeze of lemon which is also optional.
In this post, I have shared how to make a Chickpea Sundal recipe but you can use the same recipe with peanuts, mung beans, green peas, kidney beans, small fava beans, black or brown chickpeas, horse gram, etc. The Tamil word for Chickpea is Kondakadali, JFYI. There are a few variations in making any sundal but the main ingredients include mustard, chillies, hing and coconut.
For pressure cooking chickpeas
- 1 cup dried chickpeas any colour, soaked overnight in plenty of water (You may use 1 to 2 cups of canned chickpeas instead.)
- 1½ cup water
- salt to taste
For making chickpea sundal
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon urad dal
- a pinch of asafoetida hing
- sprig of curry leaves
- 1 dry red chilli torn into pieces
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger optional
- 1 small red onion diced finely (optional)
- 2 green chillies chopped
- ¼ cup grated coconut
- salt to taste
- 2 teaspoon lime juice optional
- Wash and drain the soaked chickpeas. Pressure cook with water and salt for 10 to 15 minutes or 3 to 4 whistles on medium flame. Drain and reserve the water for other uses or you may discard it. You may use canned chickpeas.1 cup dried chickpeas, 1½ cup water, salt to taste
- Heat coconut oil in a pan on low to medium flame. Add mustard seeds and let them crackle. Add urad dal (optional), hing, ginger (optional), curry leaves, green chillies or dried red chilli and saute until urad dal turns golden. Stir in the chopped onion if using and saute until translucent with a pinch of salt.1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, 1 teaspoon urad dal, a pinch of asafoetida, sprig of curry leaves, 1 dry red chilli, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, 1 small red onion, 2 green chillies
- Stir in the cooked chickpeas and fry until warmed and the ingredients are well combined.
- Switch off and stir in the grated coconut. You may squeeze some lemon juice before serving. Serve warm with chai.¼ cup grated coconut, salt to taste, 2 teaspoon lime juice