Living the Good Life…

My food blog & cookbook in progress

Green chutneys

The most basic green chutney recipe is the following, the kind that is often served in Indian restaurants with pappads or samosas. Its a very handy condiment to have in the fridge – I love it in sandwiches with cream cheese (or labneh here in Egypt) or even peanut butter. Legions of PBJ fans may want to murder me I know but this Indian twist on the classic had made converts of PB-haters I know.

One small bunch cilantro with all but the thickest of stems.

Green chillies – few to several depending on their potency, and the desired heat level of the chutney

A handful of fresh mint leaves

A piece of fresh ginger

Lime or lemon juice

Salt

Put all the ingredients in a blender and process till you have a homogeneous mixture. Add water if needed. If desired you may also add 1-2 cloves of fresh garlic

The basic recipe above is can be modified in several ways depending on availability of ingredients. For instance, mint may be omitted altogether if not available. Nuts (most commonly peanuts or coconut) or dried and roasted chickpeas (the kind one gets in India and in Egypt) may be added for more body. Alternatively, I  like to add green mangoes or very green peaches for additional flavor as well as texture.

Peanut garlic chutney

I first ate this bright green chutney as a condiment with dhokla at the home of Jyoti Aunty in Chandigarh where I grew up, and always associate it with her and kitty parties, despite the fact that the original recipe probably hails from Maharashtra.

In a blender with minimal water blend together cilantro, shelled peanuts, several cloves of garlic, green chillies and lime/lemon juice. Salt to taste. The chutney should not be liquid but rather the consistency (and for that matter the colour) of a guacamole.

Screen Shot 2017-09-27 at 11.38.29 PMSpeaking of guac.. here’s a nice twist on the chutney theme. Avocados actually make a great addition to this chutney, as an extender (not enough peanuts?) or a toner-down (too many chillies?) or simply because they’re there and taste so good. Make sure they’re very ripe and soft, and use sparingly: they should not exceed the amount of peanuts in volume as a rule. I use the seedless top of a large one or half a smaller one grind it will all the aromatics first and then add the peanuts and lime juice after.

Bonus: Thin out this chutney with some olive oil and little more citrus juice (or some yogurt or buttermilk) add black pepper and a dried herb such as cilantro and this becomes a yummy salad dressing for a chunky salad too (e.g. cucumber, tomato, iceberg lettuce).

1 Comment»

  New Year Roundup « Peregrine chronicles wrote @

[…] experiment in poaching pigeons last week. The recipe for the former is up already on demand/request here, the latter will be a few days yet… check out the stuff, and stay tuned for more updates, […]


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