I amn't really very religious by nature. I do follow the festivals and recipes to the dot since I love that part of them. Navarathri is such a festival I enjoy visiting houses where I am invited, appreciating the 'Kolu', singing, exchanging 'kumkum' and flowers and savouring 'Sundal' prasadams. These days I am getting to know much about how the 'sundals' are related to the Navagrahas(the 9 celestials) and 'Navadhanyams' or the 9 cereals/pulses/legumes for the 'Navarathri' or the '9 nights' festival!
Sunday – Sooriyan – Sun: Godumai (Wheat)
Monday – Chandran – Moon: Arisi (Rice)
(since it is not practical to make sundal out of these, generally they are broken and made as 'payasams' or 'puttu' as 'neivedyams')
Tuesday – Angarakan – Sevvai – Mars: Thuvarai (Thuvar Dhal)- Sundal can be made. Here's how I made with whole Thuvar grams.
Wednesday – Budhan – Mercury: pasi Payar (Green Gram)- Sundal can be made.
Thursday – Guru – Jupiter: Kadalai (Channa dal) or Konda Kadalai (Whole Channa or Cow peas) Recipe featured for today below!
Friday – Sukran – Venus: Mochai (White Dolicho Beans)
Saturday – Sani – Saturn: The tiny black Ellu seeds (Sesame Seeds) neivedyam can be 'ellu urundai' or the sesame seed balls.
8th day of Navarathri – Rahu: Kollu (Horse Gram)
9th day of Navarathri – Ketu: Uzhundu (Whole Urad )"Vadai" can be made. Here's the recipe for Vella Vedai made with a combination of jaggery and urad.
The recipe for today is Konda Kadalai Sundal, the Thursday's 'neivedyam' or the offering for Guru.
Konda Kadalai (Channa or Cow peas) Sundal
Brown channa / Cow peas - A cup
Oil - a tsp
Mustard 3/4 tsp
Urad dal 1 tsp
Finely minced ginger - less than 1/4 tsp ( I avoided in this recipe)
Red chilli 2 broken into 3 pcs
Green chilly- 1 , slit once lengthwise and once across
Curry leaves - a sprig
Asafoetida - 2 fat pinches
Fresh coconut bits- a few or 1-2 tbsps of shavings
Soak Channa for at least 8 hours. Pressure cook till soft with 1/4 tsp salt added to it. It needed 5 whistles in our 3 ltr cooker. Discard water. Heat oil for seasoning. Splutter mustard seeds, (ah! that's my sister posing her hands in) brown the urad dal, throw in the curry leaves, chillies and add the asafoetida. Dump in the cooked channa and stir or toss to combine with the seasoning. Check salt and add grated coconut or bits. Serve warm for the Gods as 'neivedyam'!
We; my family back home in Kerala personally like 'sundal' with unroasted coconut bits. If you add them along with the seasoning, the bits get slightly toasted and become crunchy and flavourful. Somehow we prefer raw coconut for this recipe.