It is a staple in almost all Tamil Nadu homes during dussera. I remember fondly all the various varieties we would 'collect' going as a group from house to house for navarathri 'kolu'. One problem during these times would be that one would invariably be coerced into singing atleast a few lines.. But, I guess, you would have to 'earn' the sundal. That was the price paid to get all those wonderful varieties of sundals. A few would add some small goodies like bangles or hairclips or small chains. This would add to the entire excitement! This was a necessary part of our growing up. Today when I look back, I am so glad such small pleasures made all of us so happy.
This basic kondai kadalai or kabuli chana sundal is a lovely comfort food. The recipe is utterly simple. Tenderly cooked chana mildly tempered in coconut oil, garnished with grated coconut and with a lovely soft hing undertone!
Ingredients (Serves three generously)
- Kondai kadalai or kabuli chana (raw): 1/2 cup
- Red chillies: 2 Nos, teared into small pieces
- Curry leaves: a strand
- Coconut oil: 1 tbsp
- Mustard: 1 tsp
- Urad dhall: 1 tsp
- Jeera: 1/2 tsp
- Hing: 1 big pinch
- Coconut (grated): 1/4 cup
Method of preparation:
- Soak the chana for 8 hours or overnight
- Pressure cook the chana for 7 - 8 whistles till it is tender
- Heat a kadai. Add coconut oil
- Tadka with mustard, urad dhall, jeera, red chillies, curry leaves, a pinch hing
- Add chana and cook covered for a while
- When you feel it is done, add the grated coconut
- Finish after a minute. Done!