Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Kala Vatana Usal | Black Peas Curry Recipe

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kala vatana curry
I have been exposed to various Maharashtrian dishes as I stay in Mumbai hence I have adapted many Maharastrian recipes in my daily cooking. I think that Maharashtrian style cooking is very similar to that in Karnataka and it is just that its a bit more spicy. As we do not eat much spicy food or masalas in our regular diet, I reduce the quantum of masalas drastically in the recipes.
kala vatana sambar
I have tasted Kala vatana which is Black Peas,only after shifting to Mumbai and DH who is a big fan of Kala chana loved this Kala vatana too and hence it became quite regular in our diet.Black peas is slightly harder than the regular peas and hence it takes more time to cook and also holds up its shape and gives a nice bite even after it is cooked.Ironically these black peas do not look black in color,they are slightly brownish with a green tint,I really wonder why they call this black peas(kala vatana).
kala vatana image
Kala Vatana Usal is also called as Kala Vatana Amti or Kala Vatana Sambar in Maharasthra.Usually this Kala vatana gravy is paired with Malvani Vade or Kombdi Vade,which is again a Mahasthrian special.Kombdi Vade is basically a mixed flour puri with few spices and dals and is usually paired with non vegetarian curries, but for vegetarians this Kala Vatana Curry pairs up nicely with the Kombdi Vades.I will post those vades sometime later.

If you are interested look into these traditional Maharasthrian recipes in my blog.
kala vatana sambar
Kala Vatana Usal | Black Peas Curry Recipe:
Serves 2
Prep time:10 mins | Cooking time: 50 mins | Total time: 1 hr + soaking time
Cuisine: Maharashtra-Indian | Category: Side dish

1 cup Kala Vatana(black peas)
2 medium Onions,1 sliced and 1 finely chopped
1 Tomato,chopped
1/2 cup grated fresh Coconut
3-4 Garlic pods
1/2" Ginger,chopped
1 tbsp Kala masala/Goda masala or 1/2 tsp Garam masala(see notes)
1/2 tsp Red chili powder
1 tsp Coriander powder
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tbsp Coriander leaves,to garnish
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Oil

  • Clean and wash kala vatana(black peas) and soak them in water for 8-9 hrs or overnight.
  • Rinse the peas again and pressure cook for 3-4 whistles and simmer for 10-12 mins.Black peas takes more time to cook compared to other peas,keep this in mind while cooking it.
  • Heat 2 tsp oil and add sliced onion and ginger and garlic and fry for 2 mins until it turns slight brown in color.Add grated coconut to it and fry for a couple of minutes until the coconut turns slight red in color..Cool the  mixture and grind to a fine paste.
  • Heat the remaining oil and add chopped onions and fry well until they turn pink in color.
  • Add chopped tomatoes to it and fry well.Now add ground paste, coriander powder, turmeric powder and red chili powder and fry until the gravy leaves the oil in the sides.It takes around 5-6 mins as the masala is already cooked.
  • Add boiled black peas and fry for a minute along with masala.Add enough water(roughly 2 cups) and salt and boil it for 10-12 mins over low- medium flame.You can adjust the consistency according to your requirements.I prefer to keep it thick for rotis/vades and slightly thin for rice.
  • Add chopped coriander leaves at the end.
Serve it hot with roti/Malvani(Kombdi)Vade/puris or rice.I have served it with Bagara rice.

black peas gravy
  1. You need to use Maharasthrian Kala masala for its authentic taste,but if you do not have it you can use Garam masala to it.Also apart from adding garam masala you also need to add 1 tsp fennel seeds,1 tbsp khus khus and 1-2 dagad phool(black stone flower) and 2 strings of mace while frying onion masala and grind along with it.
  2. You can follow the same recipe for yellow peas or Kala chana(black chickpeas),matki(moth bean) sprouts or Moong(whole moong) sprouts.I love all the versions.
  3. You can even sprout the black peas and use in the recipe instead of just soaked ones.
  4. Black peas takes more time to cook compared to other peas,keep this in mind while cooking it.
kala vatana usal


great-secret-of-life said...

black peas is new to me

Unknown said...

perfect for my evening rotis..wl bookmark this

Mythreyi said...

Never seen the Black Peas before, Curry looks colorful and tasty!

Hamaree Rasoi said...

Healthy and tasty looking curry. Delicious preparation.

Anonymous said...

Hi, this is very nice post. Nowadays you can get any type of curry recipes through internet. It has delicious and change your food habit.

Unknown said...


Unknown said...

Hi, Curry looks colorful. Have never tries black beans before. Should give a try. Bookmarked.


Anonymous said...

looks fab! shall try it out...Can you please give the recipe of Microwave daal?

Indian Khana said...

Yum ...remember our vatana talk ages back :) ...I can have the bowl right now...fir se banake bhej de

Simply Cheerful Food said...

Thanks for posting mouth watering recipe pictures looks nice

Simply Cheerful Food said...

Thanks for posting mouth watering recipe pictures looks nice

Shubha said...

Looks very delicious, will definitely try it soon and let u know:)

Unknown said...

Thank you so much for the detailed recipe. Tried it today, turned out super yum, just like my mom's! :)

Unknown said...

Hi, Kindly let me know from where do you source kala vatana... Have not been able to find out in any stores in navi mumbai.. any location in mumbai will help.... thanks much

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