My best Kerala style Kadala curry recipe which I proudly claim as 'better than mom's' curry.
Making puttu using packaged or homemade flour is a battle in itself. I have kinda learnt my tricks to get the puttu out without breaking...at least most of the time. When it fails, I just say "you are anyways going to break it down and pour ladles of Kadala curry.. so why bother having it in shape???" 😁 and yet don't we love the sight of the cylindrical cake sandwiched with coconut.. yum!
Better than Mom's Curry
So, let's deal with one battle at a time. I am sharing my version of Kadala curry because it took me several bad batches before striking gold. Even my mom's recipe is not my favourite. I boldly state this as Better than Mom's Kadala Curry! You will agree when you make this, like many of my readers already do.
I like my curry to be thick and together not thin where the Kadala refuses to marry the curry. I have made this version of Kadala curry umpteen times and since then F is more open to having Puttu Kadala for a weekend breakfast.
- black chickpeas: I have seen some packs call it brown or Tyson.
- coconut oil
- veggies: red onion, green chillies, ginger, tomatoes, curry leaves and shallots
- ground spices: red chilli, turmeric, coriander and my malabar garam masala
- grated coconut
- whole spices: dried rec chilli, mustard seeds and cumin seeds,
How to make it?
A brief recipe...
- First, you will pressure cook the soaked chickpeas with salt - this helps the legume hold its shape -keep aside
- Roast the coconut and dry red chilli and make a paste of it with some cooked chickpeas and water
- Use a deep pot or the same deep pressure cooker and cook the onion tomato masala with all the spice powders and Malabar garam masala
- Dump the rest of the cooked chickpeas along with their water and bring to boil
- Add the coconut paste and more water and bring to boil
- Make tadka with coconut oil and add to the simmering curry
- Switch off and close
Tasty? You will thank me!
Kerala style Kadala Curry
- 1 cup black chickpeas soaked for 8 hours or overnight
- 2 cups water
- salt to taste
Onion Tomato Masala
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 medium onion diced finely
- 3 green chillies slit
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger you may use 1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 tablespoons coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon Malabar garam masala
- 2 medium-sized tomatoes chopped chunks
- ½ cup water to adjust the consistency can use up to ¾ cup
- salt to taste
Roast and Grind
- ½ cup grated coconut ⅓ cup desiccated coconut soaked in ¼ cup water for 5 to 10 mins
- 2 to 3 dried red chillies torn
- 2 tablespoons boiled chickpeas
- ¼ cup water
To Temper (tadka)
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 3 to 4 mini shallots optional
Pressure cook chickpeas
- Pressure cook or boil the soaked black chickpeas until soft. Let it cool on its own. Check the doneness and pressure cook more if required. The chickpeas should hold the shape and yet be melted in the mouth soft.
- Meanwhile, roast the coconut along with the red chillies until the coconut becomes light brown colour and fragrant. Do it carefully by taking the pan away from the fire when it gets too hot and stirring continuously to roast evenly to golden brown colour.
- Transfer the roasted mixture into a spice blender or chutney maker- let it cool.
- Open the pressure cooker and take out a tablespoon of cooked chickpeas and add them to the roasted coconut and grind it to a thick paste with some water.
Prepare the kadala curry
- Heat some more coconut oil in a deep pot and add onions and saute until translucent
- Add the grated ginger (or ginger-garlic paste) and sauté for a couple of minutes
- Add all the spice powders and fry for a couple of minutes until the raw smell is gone
- Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until mushy
- Reduce the flame to low and cover the pot to cook down the tomatoes until no trace of chunks
- Dump all of the cooked black chickpeas along with the water and bring this to boil
- Add the coconut paste, wash down the jar with some water and add that too and bring to a boil on low to medium flame and let it simmer while you prepare the tadka
- Heat coconut oil in a small pan and add the items listed under 'to temper' and fry till shallots turn golden brown.
- Pour the tadka over the curry and mix
- Serve hot with warm puttu (steamed rice cake) or chapatis