Kerala Kadala Curry – Coconut Black Chickpea Curry

post modified on July 13

Written by Puja

Kerala Kadala Curry

The recipe that I am going to share today is another South Indian dish called Kerala Kadala Curry . One of the key ingredients in this curry like most other Kerala curries is coconut which is the primary component of the masala paste used in this curry. And the best part about this curry is that it goes well with idiappam (Nool-puttu), Idli, Puttu, Appam and even Plain dosa.This is a preferred curry in most Kerala hotels for the vegetarians.

Kerala Kadala Curry

This curry reminds me of the chana-bhature that we used to get in the Shanichari Bazaar (Saturday Market) in Delhi. Not that it has the same taste but because the side-dish in Chana-Bhatura that you get in the Shanichari Bazaar, also uses black Chicpeas. And it gives the chana curry in the Chana Bhatura a unique flavor and taste. And that is exactly what it does to this Kadala Curry as well.

Kerala Kadala Curry

The general feeling with most people is that every curry that uses Coconut is a Kerala curry. But with more and more people realizing the goodness in Coconut and with Coconut Oil being the latest addition to the list of Superfoods, people have started adopting Coconut in their foods.

Kerala Kadala Curry

I should agree to the fact that I too, used to hate the smell of coconut oil in curries and dishes. But gradually with regular use, it changed.

Kerala Kadala Curry

I should thank my mom-in-law for that. Most of her recipes used coconut oil. And since all her recipes tasted great, I couldn’t resist the temptation of tasting all of these dishes as well. And that’s how it all started.

Kerala Kadala Curry

Most of her recipes used coconut oil. And since all her recipes tasted great, I couldn’t resist the temptation of tasting all of these dishes as well. And that’s how it all started.

Today, I am a fan of coconut oil. And I prefer using coconut oil in most of the South Indian dishes that I cook so that I can preserve the originality of the dish. You can also call it an effect of Coconut being the only easily accessible Super-food.

Kerala Kadala Curry

My favorite combination for Kadala Curry is Appam. Just as the ad for Lays would say, “No one can eat just one”, it applies for Appam and Kadala Curry as well. You will fall in love with it if you have it once and am sure you will not be able to stop at one.

Kerala Kadala Curry

But that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t go well with any other foods. You can have it with Plain rice and Poori too. So let’s Jump on to the recipe.

Kerala Kadala Curry

Kerala Kadala Curry

Kerala Kadala Curry – Coconut Black Chickpea Curry

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Prep Time: 8 hours
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 8 hours 40 minutes
Servings: 5 -6
Author: Puja


  • Whole bengal gram/black chickpeas/kala chana - 1 cup

For Coconut Paste:

  • Coconut - 1 cup
  • Fennel seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander Seeds - 3 tsp
  • Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Mace/javitri - 2-3 strands
  • Pepper Corn - 3-4
  • Green Cardamom - 2
  • Whole Red Chilli - 2
  • Cinnamon -1 inch
  • Cloves -3

For Onion Tomato Paste:

  • Onion - 2 roughly chopped
  • Ginger-Garlic Paste - 1 tbsp
  • Green Chilli - 3-4
  • Tomato - 1 or 2 roughly chopped
  • Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
  • Salt - as per the taste
  • Red chili powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder - 2 tsp
  • Garam masala powder - 2 tsp
  • Salt as required
  • Oil - 1 tbsp

For Tempering:

  • Small onion/shallots - 5-6 thinly sliced
  • Asafoetida - a pinch
  • CurryLeaves - 2-3 sprigs
  • Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Oil - 2 tbsp


  • Soak black chickpeas for 8 to 9 hours or overnight.
  • Cook chickpeas in a pressure cooker by adding 1/2 tsp of salt in it.
  • Cook chickpeas till they are soft and set aside.
  • Heat a small kadai add fennel seeds, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, javitri, pepper corn, green cardamom, whole red chilli, cinnamon and cloves.
  • Fry for few seconds and then add grated coconut and dry roast everything together.
  • Once done take out the mixture in a plate and let it cool down.
  • Once it is cold grind the roasted coconut mixture by adding little water in it. and set aside.
  • Heat oil in the same kadhai.
  • Add onion, green chilli, turmeric and salt and saute until golden brown.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and fry till the raw smell goes.
  • Now add tomatoes and cook for some more time and then switch of the stove. Let the mixture cool down.
  • Once it gets cold grind onion-tomato mixture to a smooth paste and set aside.
  • Now heat oil in a big kadai add mustard seeds and let it splutter.
  • Once the seeds starts spluttering add curry leaves and fry for few seconds.
  • Now add chopped small onion and hing and fry for few minutes.
  • Add onion-tomato paste, coriander powder, garam-masala powder, chilli powder and fry till the raw smells of masala's goes off.
  • Once the masala's gets fried properly add the coconut paste and mix well.
  • Now add the cooked black chana or kadala, and water as per required and let the chana boil.
  • Switch off the stove and serve kadala curry along with appam, puttu, pathiri, roti, puri, idiyappam or rice.
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A self-proclaimed Champion Cook, who gets the confidence from the love and praises showered upon me by my family consisting of a Cute little Daughter and a husband who loves the Internet more than me (LoL..) and who incidentally happens to be the man behind the technical aspects of this blog.
I love working from home and the benefits that come from it and that is why I started this blog where I document all my adventures with cooking.
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