Lentil dumplings curry is a very traditional South Indian dish originating from Tamilnadu served for lunch in the weddings, during celebration times and festival days. Its called in the local language as paruppu urundai curry. Lentils are ground and mixed with herbs and spices and made into dumplings and then it boils with the gravy. The dumplings absorb the flavor from the gravy and they become soft and tender and melt in your mouth. Every bite is worth it. This curry goes well with rice. —suguna
Soak half a cup of chana dal (split chickpea) with 2 cups of water for 2 hours. Strain the water and grind the lentils to a coarse paste. Do not add water while grinding. There might be one or two lentil grains that might be left whole while grinding. That is perfectly fine.
Add the following to the ground lentil. Fennel seeds, finely minced garlic, finely chopped onions, turmeric, finely minced green chilli, finely chopped coriander leaves, fresh shredded coconut and salt. Mix everything well to combine. Make little dumpling balls from the mixture and set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoon of oil in a pan and add in the cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds, 1 sprig curry leaf and crushed Garlic. Saute until the garlic starts to brown and the curry leaves turn crisp. Add in the chopped onions. Saute until the onions are soft.
Now puree 2-3 very ripe tomatoes in a food processor. Add it to the pan.
Add in the salt, turmeric and the chilli powder. Fry until the tomatoes are cooked well and streaks of oil appear on top. About 4-5 minutes on medium flame.
Grind half a cup of fresh shredded coconut with half a cup of water to a smooth paste. Add it to the pan.
Add in 2 cups of water and let it simmer to a full boil. Check for seasoning at this stage. Add in more salt if necessary. Once the curry comes to a full boil, add the dumplings one by one carefully. DO NOT stir for the first 5 minutes as the dumplings might break. Let the flame be at medium when the dumplings are boiling.
After 5 minutes, turn the dumplings if necessary. Let it simmer for 10-12 more minutes. Remove off heat.