Chutneys are basically dips or side dishes made from a variety of ingredients. They can be dry – when made without using water, thick – when made with limited quantities of water, or thin – when made into pouring consistency.
Chutney seemed to have originated in the Indian subcontinent where we have different types of chutneys to go with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
In those days chutneys were made using a stone grinder called the ammi kal , or sil batta which is a flat stone with a roller on top. Chutneys made in these tasted absolutely divine. Though in today’s fast-paced world using the stone has become a thing of the past, many Indians still have one at home.
I have a very small cute one, which I bought from the Indian Supermarket in Qatar for QR 45/-. But I rarely find time to use it, and mostly rely on my chutney jar which came with my mixer.
Chutneys that go well with breakfast/dinner recipes are usually made out of coconuts, onions, garlic, tomatoes, and green leaves like coriander, curry leaves, mint, etc. Kids call these chutneys white chutney, red chutney, green chutney, or rose chutney based on the color.
For lunch, the chutneys are prepared in a different way, so as to go with cooked rice and are called thogayals / chammandhis/Thokkus. There are also non-vegetarian chutneys made from meat.
Usually, chutneys are tempered by frying mustard seeds, split urad dhal, curry leaves, and/or red chillies. The tempering gives it a very nice aroma, which wafts in the whole house. But some people prefer to have it without tempering.
For me it’s dependant on time 🙂 . I temper when I have time, and just drizzle with coconut oil if I am not tempering. Chutneys are a great way to include vegetables and herbs in their live form, that is without cooking.
With the advent of the mixer/mixie making chutneys have become a breeze. I have lots of varieties of chutneys coming up. Do try them along with Indian breakfast and lunch recipes and you will be hooked on to Indian Cuisine forever 🙂 .
Chutney recipes for breakfast and dinner
Chutney recipes for lunch
Lots more coming up….