Rinse soak Kala chana for 6-8 hours or overnight in 4 cups of water.
In the morning drain, rinse the Kala chana add 2 cups of water.
Add the soda if using and pressure cook for 4 whistles or till the soft.
Let the cooker pressure come down naturally. Check the Kala chana is done. Just press it between your fingers. If it mashes easily it is done.
Drain the chickpeas and reserve the water to make your dal or gravies.
In a chutney pot of the mixer grind 1/2 cup of grated coconut and green chillies. Keep aside. I did not do this as my coconut was fine enough.
Heat a kadhai/wok, add oil ( you can use coconut oil).
Add the mustard and let it splutter.
Add hing or asafoetida, add whole red chillies ( I used red chilli powder), curry leaves.
Add the coconut-chilli mix and stir well. Add the kala chana and stir-fry. Mix well.
Switch off the flame. Serve it immediately.