Monday, April 9, 2012

Kadala Curry- Kerala Style ( Chick peas/ Chana in coconut milk and with sliced coconut

Puttu and Kadala Curry is one of the favorite and common traditional breakfast combination of a malayalee (Keralite). Kadala Curry is also a good combination with chappathi, appam, idiyappam. When I make it I make little extra so that it will go with one night dinner ( With Chappathi ) and next day's breakfast ( With Puttu). There is a proverb in Malayalam "ഒരു വെടിക് രണ്ടു പക്ഷി" - " Killing two birds with one bullet". Similarly with one dish I serve both breakfast and dinner.
Well, In this recipe you can see that I used two cups of Kadala and it serves 8-10 persons. What happened is that I made little more extra so that I can give it to my neighbor and one of my husband's colleague. Me and my neighbor "S.." have a habit of exchanging food. It all started when I became pregnant with my second kid. She used to feel sympathetic to me, seeing me struggling with my 2 year old naughty and restless son and doing cooking and other household chores. And I used to feel guilty to take it from her. She is a working lady works 5 days and cook on week-ends. And I being a house wife sitting at home. So I used to return her food containers with some dishes  when ever I can. And this episode still continues.

Well, "S.." and her husband gave me a "good" feed back about this dish. And told me that I should definitely put this in my blog. And she asked me for the recipe with exact measurement. Now a days since I started a blog I usually use measuring spoons and measuring cups so that I can post exact measurements. Earlier it was just pouring it from my 'spice containers' tuck.... tuck... tuck.... Sometimes spices/ masala will be little bit more or little bit less. Here, goes exact measurement. I am little bit confused about 'Perumjeerakam powder' I added. Whether it was 1/2 tsp or 1 tsp. Rest measurements are fine.

Serves - 8-10
1) Chana / Kadala / Chick peas - 2 cup
2) Sliced Big Onion - 1-1 1/2
3) Chopped Garlic- 1 pod
4) Chopped Ginger - 1 piece
5) Green Chilly -3
6) Sliced Coconut - 1/2 cup
7) Turmeric Powder- 1/2 tsp
8) Chilly Powder - 1 tsp
9) Coriander Powder - 2 tbsp
10) Gram Masala - 1- 1 1/4 tsp
11) Perumjeerakam powder (Ground fennel seeds) - 1/2- 3/4 tsp
12) Coconut Milk - 1 tin
13) Mustard seeds
14) Oil
15) Curry leaves
16) Salt

  • Soak the chana in water overnight or 6-8 hrs.
  • Heat oil in pressure cooker. When the oil is hot, splutter the mustard seeds.
  • Add Sliced onion, ginger, garlic, green chilly and curry leaves. Saute occasionally.
  • When the onion turns brown, add chilly powder, coriander powder, perumjeerakam,  Gram masala, turmeric powder. Saute continuously. When the roasted masala aroma comes add chick peas/ Chana/ Kadala, Salt and sliced coconut. Pour water enough to cover the chana. Stir.
  • Close the pressure cooker and when the steam comes out put on the weight. Remove from the flame after 3-4 whistle. Wait for the pressure to get over. Or put the pressure cooker under running cold water. When the pressure is over, open the pressure cooker.
  • Add coconut milk to it. Stir. Bring the dish to boil and turn off the flame.


  1. This is an excellent recipe, my husband was all ga-ga about this. It came out well and went good with puttu.. Now a days, he is forcing me to make puttu so that he can have this curry. Rosy, keep posting good recipes like this.

  2. Sure !!! Really happy to hear that it worked for you.

  3. There's Kerala Style restaurant in Cleveland, Ohio, where I had chickpea curry that was so delicious. I can find anything similar in home state of New Jersey, every restaurant has same thick tomato-base Channa Marsala Still looking in NJ but this recipe just be close to my Cleveland version, well the photo looks like. Can't wait to try it.

    Thanks for sharing

    1. Thanks for the compliment. Hope you will try it and let me know.

  4. When you refer to garlic - what is a pod? Is that same as clove or do you mean entire garlic head.

    Also with coconut milk, what is a tin? is that the same 1 cup?

    What is the measurement for mustard seeds?


    1. Pod means the entire garlic and clove is one piece of garlic from the bunch.
      Here, by 1 tin coconut milk , i meant store brought coconut milk. Here in USA , i get it in tins. It is approximately 1- 1 1/2 cups. You can add the coconut milk according to your taste. Some people like it to be thick and some light.

      Measurement for mustard seeds - 1/4-1/2 tsp

      If you have any more doubts write to me.

  5. aw.. tin-can, a can of coconut milk. Sorry wasn't thinking. That reminds minds of "soda-pop" American growing up in the midwest calls it "pop" and east-coasters calls it "soda".

    I'm teaching myself how to cook Indian food via internet, and I keep reading that homemade Garam Masala is better than store bought. So I found this mixture

    Cardamom - 40 nos( green)
    Cloves - 35 nos
    Cinnamon Stick - 2 or 3
    Star anise - 1
    Nutmeg - 1/2 of a whole one ,or you can use one full, if you like.

    Thanks I will let you know how it turns out, I'm making it now.

  6. yeah, home-made gram masala is better. I use the one made by my mom. Freshly grind masala tastes even better and have lots of flavor. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

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  8. I lived in Kerala for a year and have really missed the food since I've been home. I found your recipe and made it was absolutely delicious. I used too much water in the pressure cooker when cooking the chickpeas...they came out watery and bland. I didn't want to keep cooking and overcook the peas so I strained the liquid out, and cooked the liquid until it was substantially reduced, and then added it back to the peas. Perfect! My daughter (another fan of Kerala food)says I should make it that way every was delicious. I'm going to check out some of your other recipes. Thanks!

  9. Thanks Kathie, for leaving a comment. I hope you daughter enjoys the other recipes too.


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