South Indian Sundal (Chickpea salad)

By • June 4, 2011 10 Comments

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Author Notes: Sundal is something that I grew up with on the coastal shores of South India! Sundal, is a savory snack that is very popular inside and outside the homes of Tamilians.
It is also one of the most popular snacks munched on while sitting on the cool sands of the beach in the evening watching the sea lapping at the shores. Growing up in Chennai, a coastal city, I loved going to the beach at dusk and listening to the waves hitting the coast. - AshaFSK


Food52 Review: AshaFSK’s South Indian Sundal delivers a big exotic punch for minimal effort. The nutty and crisped chickpeas are complemented by toasty coconut, which lends a subtle sweetness, tangy mustard seeds that pop when you bite into them, and a substantial kick from the chiles. I can only daydream about munching this on the beach in Chennai as AshaFSK describes, but for now it makes a great summery snack with cocktails on the patio. - MidgeMidge

Serves 2

  • 1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 2 teaspoons whole black mustard seeds
  • 7 sprigs curry leaves
  • 4 green chillies, diced
  • 3 tablespoons dessicated coconut
  • 1 pinch salt, as needed
  1. Soak the beans, in enough water and a little salt, overnight. Cook the beans in salted water in pan or in a pressure cooker (2-1/2 whistles) until just done. Drain and set aside. This can be made upto 2 days ahead.
  2. In a shallow pan, saute a bit or oil (ghee is best!). When the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and wait for them to pop.
  3. Add the curry leaves and chillies. As they start to crisp up, add the cooked beans.
  4. Toss and cook on low for a couple of minutes. Sprinkle the grated coconut and toss and cook for a few minutes.
  5. That's it. Serve! :)

More Great Recipes: Beans & Legumes|Appetizers|Salads|Side Dishes|Curries

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Comments (10) Questions (2)


about 4 years ago J-Dizzle

I love the versatility of the lil' ol' chickpea!! Thanks for sharing this recipe! :o)


about 4 years ago Anne S

Is it worth attempting with canned chickpeas? I don't own a pressure cooker, but this looks fantastic!


over 3 years ago ejm

Hi Anne - looks like the recipe calls for either boiling or pressure cooker - once soaked change the water, bring to a boil - skim the foam that rises, and once boiled for a few minutes (5-10) you can add a bit of salt to the water and reduce the heat to a simmer - depending on the age of your beans it will take 90-120 minutes for them to be cooked.

You probably could use canned but the ones you soak and cook are so much better and not really that much more work.


about 1 year ago Asha

Anne, Sorry seeing your question, very delayed. I would not recommend canned chickpeas as the texture will be too mushy. This recipe needs a bite to remain in the beans


about 4 years ago lapadia



about 4 years ago Emiko

This looks and sounds gorgeous. Can't wait to try it out!


over 4 years ago Fairmount_market

Sounds delicious. I've had no luck getting fresh curry leaves where I live. Any substitutes?


over 4 years ago Panfusine

You beat me to it...Sundal is such a comfort food!


over 4 years ago EmilyC

What a stunning photo! Can't wait to try this dish. I'm not sure what dessicated coconut is? Would shredded unsweetened work?


over 4 years ago susan g

Dessicated = dried.