varutharacha kadala curry recipe kerala style

Nadan Varutharacha Kadala Curry Recipe - Puttu Kadala Curry - Kerala Chickpea Curry

Very popular and delicious South Indian Kerala style chickpea curry or kadala curry for puttu, appam, chapathi, poori or rice, made using vella kadala or white chickpeas or garbanzo beans in a gravy of roasted coconut and exotic spices.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Soaking Time 8 hours
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 325kcal
Author Rose


  • 2 cups dry chickpeas
  • 2 cups coconut grated or shredded
  • 1 small sized onion finely chopped
  • 5 cups water (plus more water for soaking chickpeas)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt adjust as needed
  • 2 teaspoons crushed garlic
  • 2 teaspoons crushed ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 4 tablespoons coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds powder

For seasoning

  • 3 tablespoons Coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 string curry leaves
  • 5 dry red chilies


  • Wash the chickpeas and soak it in some water overnight or you can soak this for 7 to 8 hours at least.
  • After soaking the chickpeas for 5 to 6 hours, drain the water, lightly wash the chickpeas and keep it aside.
  • Heat a pan, dry roast the grated coconut in low heat, keep stirring so it won't get burnt at the bottom of the pan.
  • As you are roasting the coconut, add all the spices to the coconut in the pan, and roast for another few minutes or until the coconut is very well roasted. The coconut turns dark brown in color and become quite oily, but make sure it is not getting burnt in the pan. The roasted coconut (which looks brown now) along with the roasted spices gives a nice exotic aroma.
  • Now let us blend the mix of roasted coconut & spices in a food processor. We are grinding the mix without any water here, so just don't use the water yet.
  • Transfer the roasted coconut in spices to the food process and grind until the mix is well blended, like you can see in the above photo.
  • Now heat oil in the pressure cooker and let us make the seasoning. You may also add the seasoning at last instead of preparing it in the beginning, but making this ahead makes things more easier so I am doing it this way here but you can always make it at last and pour it over the dish which will look more appealing. So let us do the seasoning now.
  • As the oil in the pressure cooker is heated enough, add the mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds start to splutter, add the red chilies and curry leaves and fry for a few seconds.
  • Add the garlic and ginger, fry for 2 minutes.
  • Add the finely sliced onion and fry for few minutes until the onion slices are browned (or turn transparent in color).
  • Now add the chickpeas (which is already drained and water content is removed) gently to the oil. You can use a long handled spatula to transfer the chickpeas gently to the hot oil without splashing the oil.
  • Mix the chickpeas with the seasoning and saute for few seconds.
  • Now add the roasted coconut & spices mix (which is made to a paste in by dry grinding the mix) to the chickpeas saute for another few seconds.
  • Add the salt and water, mix everything well. Now this is ready to be cooked.
  • Close the pressure cooker with the lid. Make sure you have put the safety valve and followed all guide lines in the manual as this is important for your safety while using a pressure cooker.
  • Cook in medium heat for about 4 to 5 whistles or about 12 minutes. Chickpeas need more time to get soft and cooked compare to most other small sized lentils.
  • After 12 minutes of cooking, you can switch off the stove, and wait for the pressure cooker to cool down.
  • Once the pressure cooker is cooled enough, you can open the lid and see if the chickpeas are cooked and soft.
  • Mix well the contents and the delicious chickpeas curry which is ready to serve now!


You can serve the hot and delicious chickpeas curry with rice for lunch or use this as a side dish for flatbreads like chapati or use it with popular Kerala style breakfasts like puttu or appam or whatever dish you like!


Calories: 325kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Sodium: 175mg | Potassium: 640mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 350IU | Vitamin C: 49mg | Calcium: 86mg | Iron: 4.6mg