Every few hundred kilometres that you travel in India, you will find a new and exciting chutney to accompany the main dish in every regional cuisine. Herbs, vegetables, fruits – anything can be used to make these side dishes, which are full of nutrition and rich in flavour.
Here are five chutneys to add a dash of spice to your meals this summer!
Raw Mango Chutney
3 raw mangoes; 4 green chillies, chopped; 6 tbsp jaggery powder; 1 tsp red chilli powder; salt to taste; 1 tbsp oil; 3 dry red chillies; 1 tsp mustard seeds
Peel, slice and chop the mangoes (remove seeds). Put them into a pan and add green chillies. Pour just enough water to cover the mangoes and chillies. Simmer and cook till it becomes a pulpy mash.
Now add the chilli powder and jaggery to the pan. Cook for another 2 mins. Keep aside till cool. Next, heat oil in a pan. Toss in dry red chillies and mustard seeds. Pour over the mango chutney, and it is ready to serve.
Store in the refrigerator in an air-tight container; it stays fresh for two weeks.
Sweet Amla Chutney
300 gm amla (gooseberries); 300 gm jaggery; 1 tsp salt; ½ tsp black salt; ½ tsp cardamom powder; ½ tsp red chilli powder; 1 tsp garam masala; ½ tsp black pepper powder
Boil the amlas in a pot with 1 cup water. Simmer till they get soft (10–15 minutes). Once soft, turn off the flame and strain in a bowl. Remove the seeds and grind to a fine paste. In a pan, add this amla paste and cook on low flame.
Now add jaggery, salts, black pepper, cardamom powder, red chilli powder and garam masala. Mix and cook on low flame. Keep stirring at regular intervals until it gets thick in consistency. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Store in the refrigerator; it stays fresh for over three months.
Mint Coriander Chutney
3 cups coriander; 1 cup fresh mint; 1” piece of ginger; 3 green chillies; 1 tbsp minced garlic; 1 chopped onion; 1 tsp fennel seeds; 40 ml lemon juice; 1 tbsp roasted cumin powder; salt to taste
Add all ingredients except lemon juice to a blender and grind. Then add lemon juice and mix. Taste and adjust the lime juice, salt and chilli. Refrigerate in an air-tight container.
Garlic Chilli Chutney
1 cup of garlic cloves, peeled; 5–6 dried Kashmiri chillies; 3 tsp lime juice; 2 tsp red chilli powder; salt to taste
Add garlic cloves, chillies, red chilli powder, lime juice and salt to a food processor or a mortar (it takes longer with mortar and pestle but the result is a beautiful, thick chutney). Grind until you have a thick paste. Adjust spices to your liking. Store in the refrigerator. It stays fresh for a month.
8 tomatoes, chopped; 1 tsp mustard seeds; 2 tsp ginger, chopped; 4 garlic cloves, crushed; 1 tsp oil; 10–15 curry leaves; 1 tsp red chilli powder; 1 tsp vinegar; 2 tsp sugar; salt, pepper to taste
Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds, curry leaves, ginger and garlic. Once cooked, add tomatoes and cook for 5–6 mins. Add the seasoning and cook 3–4 mins or until the tomatoes are squishy. Cool before serving.
First published in eShe magazine
Recipes by Kaveri Jain. Photography by Ananya Jain