Skip to main content

Chutney etc.

Is any cuisine complete without its sauces and dips. For what's this world without salsa and guacamole, or without ketchup and pesto. Indian cuisine has tens of these sauces (aka chutneys) and hundreds of recipes to go with them, passed down the generations. From this virtual rainbow of dips and sauces, I pick my top five:

1. Green Chutney : It always has coriander and/or mint. Something sour is a given, but the medium varies from dried pomegranate seeds (anardana) to raw mangoes and lemons.

2. Kebab Dip : This version of green chutney has coriander blended with yogurt to give a light green color and a subtly tangy flavor. It is usually served with kebabs, but i love it specially with dal makhani and naan. Or with only naan. Just bring it on...

3. Tamarind Chutney : Tamarind pulp cooked with raw sugar or dates. A must for chaats and bhel, the ubiquotous Bombay street food.

4. More than Ketchup : For our pakoras and samosas, ketchup is just not enough. So the ketchup makers have come up with the spicy Indian variations. My favorite is Tomato Pudina (with mint), but really - anything that's tomato, yet hot and spicy goes.

5. Podi : Simply speaking, it means powder. But the word almost always refers to a spicy red powder that's mixed with ghee to form a dip - a dip that makes your idlis come to life.

There are a lot more - the coconut chutney from South India, the spicy garlic paste that goes into Bombay's own Batata Vada. But while I can't recount the endless list, what I leave this post with is the recipe for my top favorite, the green chutney.



Two recipes, actually! The one featured above is made when raw mangoes are in season. Grind together 1/2 cup coriander leaves, 1/2 cup mint leaves, 1 small raw mango - peeled and sliced, 1 green chilli, salt and 1/2 tsp roasted cumin seeds until everything's turned into a deliciously smooth paste.

This is a very versatile chutney and can be served with rice & dal or with curries. But I like it best on a buttered toast for breakfast. Or in a vegetable sandwich. Since mango is the main ingredient here, this goes to Arundati who is hosting this month's Weekend Breakfast Blogging with the theme Mango Madness

Now for the second recipe. This is my mother's staple and can be made throughout the year. You need 1 cup mint leaves, 1 finely chopped onion, 1 green chilli, a tbsp of anardana and salt. Grind everything together until well blended. This one will have a coarser texture, but is just as delicious!

Comments

Divya Vikram said…
nice chutney recipe..nice pic too
Sangeeth said…
good recipe.nice pic ;)
Anonymous said…
hi simran, nice chutney you have here....i think it will be great with litghly buttered toast....btw it makes a great entry for WBB this month is mangoes....will be happy if you could send this in!! cheers!!

Popular posts from this blog

Tales of A Female Nomad

This month, our book club goes on a nomadic tour. We traveled with Rita Golden Gelman, a writer who sold everything she owned after the shock of a divorce and became a nomad. Not a tourist, because Rita stays away from everything that a tourist does and instead, tries to live the lives of people she visits.

From Mexico to Israel to Galapago Islands, Rita goes the way least traveled, always preferring to stay as a boarder with natives. And sometimes, going to places not even locals will go, places so secluded yet beautiful that Rita's description takes your breath away, urges you to become a nomad yourself.

Yet even nomads sometimes find their roots. Rita found hers in Bali where she spent eight years. Starting as a boarder with a prince, she eventually became a part of the family. I instantly knew I wanted to cook something Indonesian. I picked Nasi Goreng, the Indonesian fried rice.



There are as many recipes for Nasi Goreng as there are cooks. Some use tomatoes, others tamarind.…

Mystery Fruit

This only happened a few times every year, just when the rainy season kicked in. A street hawker will come by, straw basket on head. He will yell "kaul chapni" and I will run out to buy a bundle of these. Stuck together like flowers, they looked like a bouquet. Every hole contains a little fruit. You break out the package, peel the tiny fruit that pops out and eat it. Done slowly, it can take you an hour to eat an head. Or did, when I was about 12 years old.

That was the last time I saw this fruit. I've never seen it again, didn't even know what it was called or where it came from. Three weeks back, Vikram Doctor wrote about a store in Khar that sells Sindhi foods. He described this fruit and I knew it came from my vivid childhood memories. And finally, I knew we were talking about lotus fruit.

Now talk about coincidences. Last weekend, I was passing by a lane in Bandra and for the first time in many, many years I saw the straw basket filled with my mytery fruit. It…

Announcing AWED : Britain

Before I ate my first Italian wood fired pizza, before I went to that swanky Japanese sushi bar for the first time, or the neighborhood Chinese joint, the first non-Indian cuisine I encountered was British. Not real food, mind you, but the tempting, oh so delicious descriptions in my favorite novels. From Enid Blyton to Jane Austen to P.G. Wodehouse, every favorite character in every favorite novel seems to have food on their mind.

Yes, British food gets ridiculed a lot. But forget their main course dishes for now, and think of the full English breakfast and the elegant afternoon teas. Then try imagining the world without cucumber sandwiches or potato chips and you will realize you can't do without British food.

Which is why when I saw that DK was looking for hosts for her monthly event AWED (A Worldly Epicurean's Delight) and there has never been a British AWED, I promptly signed up.



The rules are simple really:

Make any vegetarian or vegan British dish (eggs are allowed in A…