Chana Dal Usli ..... A spicy bhaji type dish made out of chana dal somewhat similar to moong dal usli ........
Wash and soak 2 cups of chana dal for 2 hrs. Wash again and drain off all water. Keep in a colander for the excess water to be completely drained.
Put the chana dal in a food processor and pulse 3-4 times for the dal to be crushed into pieces only. Do not grind the dal, they should be just broken to pieces. Remove and put it in a pressure cooker with 2 cups of water. Mix well and pressure cook to 3-4 whistles. Let the pressure drop on its own. When cool remove the lid and keep ready.
Heat 2-3 tblsp of oil in a thick bottomed large kadai. When the oil is hot enough add 1 tsp jeera, 1 tsp rai, 8-10 chopped green chillies (plus or minus depending upon individual taste as to how spicy you want the dish to be), 8-10 curry leaves, pinch of haldi / turmeric and 1 heaped tsp of hing powder. Fry for a minute or two and add in the ground chana dal. Mix well. Add 1/2 cup of finely chopped gongura leaves (Optional / you can leave this out and add ½ lemon squeezed at the end instead), salt to taste and mix well.
Lower the heat to minimum, cover and let cook on its own steam for 10-15 minutes. Check in between, so that the dal does not get burnt.
Add one cup of freshly grated coconut and ½ cup of finely chopped coriander leaves and mix well. Cover and further cook for another 5-10 minutes. Garnish with a few coriander leaves and coconut on top of the usli.
Remove and serve hot with a dash of lime (if gongura leaves are added, do not add lime) as it is or with any dish as an accompaniment.