Chutney chatter

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | NAREN THIMMAIAH
Published Apr 3, 2016, 12:19 am IST
Updated Apr 3, 2016, 12:19 am IST
Executive Chef Naren Thimmaiah shares some recipes of the delightful, ground, spiced and yum accompaniment to your meal.
Peanut Chutney
 Peanut Chutney

Chutney is a side dish that exudes the rich flavours of Indian cuisine. Varying from region to region in terms of the ingredients used, it celebrates the local tastes in abundance. The purpose of a chutney usually depends on the meal.

Down South, chutney is mainly coconut-based, and is the main accompaniment for most staple breakfast dishes. But in other parts of the country, it is a side dish with the main function being adding a tangy twist to the meal and also breaking the monotony of a regular meal. Some chutneys also provide the required tartness to a balanced meal. Medicinal plants that are believed to have beneficial effects are sometimes made into chutneys too.

 

Normally ground with a mortar and pestle or a regular grinding stone, coconut, either grated or cut into small pieces, is the main ingredient in the South. Adding a sprinkling of fresh green chillies, coriander leaves, a piece of ginger can turn the taste around. Dry red chilli or tamarind or roasted channa dal can also be used. Finally, the ground paste, either coarse or fine or even something in between, is tempered with oil, mustard or curry leaves.

The Andhra chutney powders are well-known among spice lovers, and are made from a combination of roasted dried lentils, leaves and are usually sprinkled on idlis or dosas or even rice during a meal (with a nice dollop of ghee). Peanut chutneys in a thickish consistency or as a dry powder are also quite popular.

 

We are used to popular combinations of green mint and chilli chutney or contrasting sweet brown tamarind chutney. Whether they accentuate a dish, or add flavour to a nice dosa or idli, the chutney is the oldest and most delectable of add-ons that complete an Indian meal and here are some of my favourites.

The writer is the executive chef at The Gateway Hotel, Bengaluru

Peanut Chutney

Ingredients

Peanuts 100 gm
Red chillies 15 gm
Garlic 10 gm
Onion 60 gm
Curry leaves 10 gm
Tamarind 10 gm
Salt 10 gm

For tempering

Sunflower oil 40 ml
Curry leaves 5 gm
Dry red chilli pieces 5 gm
Mustard seeds 5 gm

 

Tomato Chutney

INGREDIENTS
Tomato sliced 1.2 kg
Onion sliced 400 gm
Red chilli dry 40 gm
Channa dal 80 gm
Sunflower oil 60 ml
Salt 40 gm
 
For tempering
Sunflower oil 40 ml
Curry leaves 5 gm
Dry red chilli pieces 5 gm
Mustard seeds 5 gm
Split white urad dal 5 gm
 
METHOD
Heat 65 ml oil in a pan and lightly fry channa dal. Add sliced onion and red chilli; saute till it starts turning brown.
Now, add tomato and cook till the tomato is mashed and the mixture is fairly thick. Cool this mixture and make a fine paste of it.
Add salt and check for seasoning.
Heat oil for tempering, add the rest of the ingredients for tempering and when the mustard crackles, add it to the chutney and mix it. Serve chilled.

 

Tomato ChutneyTomato Chutney

Mango Chammanthi

Ingredients
Coconut grated 1
Raw mango 1
Ginger 10 gm
Chilli powder 1 tsp
Shallots 15 gm    
Curry leaves 1 sprig
Salt to taste

Mango ChammanthiMango Chammanthi

Method
Roughly grind the ingredients. Check seasoning and use as accompaniment for biryani or curd rice.

 

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