"I don't know that that many people know this dish, but once you try it, you will want to know how to make it. This is a classic Andhra dish that is much loved in our house. My mother makes the best Patholi I have ever eaten; this is her recipe. Serve with hot rice and ghee. Patholi is dry and works very well with Pulusu pacchadi (Andhra sweet-sour stew) and avakaya (Andhra mango pickle)"
Place the chana dal into a large container and cover with several inches of cool water; let soak 4 to 6 hours. Drain and rinse.
Combine the chana dal, green chile peppers, and salt in a large bowl; mash into a thick and coarse paste. Add water as needed to help mash, but use as little as possible.
Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet. Cook the urad dal, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, dried red chile peppers, curry leaves, and asafoetida powder in the hot oil until the seeds begin to splutter, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onion and cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Stir the chana dal paste into the mixture; cook and stir until the dal is cooked through and tender, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle the cilantro and cayenne pepper over the mixture and stir. Cook another 5 minutes.