Wednesday, 28 May 2014

The Perfect Green Chutney

Eureka! Eureka! Eureka! Surely it was an Eureka moment when I tasted my chutney straight from the grinder. Perfect! Just the right balance of flavors and just the way me and, especially, my husband loves it. It is not the first time that I have made this but certainly a first for this perfection. I know that Green Chutney is a staple for most Indian households and most prepare it the perfect way with the blink of an eye, anytime and everytime. However, when you ask them the recipe, all you get to hear is "just put evetything together in the grinder and pulse!" Well, I do not blame them either. They are so habituated in making this chutney that it is more of instincts for them rather than measurements. Nevertheless, I have finally cracked down on the measurements today and henceforth, I will be able to proudly boast about my Green Chutney. Oh! And did I mention, my husband loves it and I strongly believe and implement that "The way to a man's wallet is through his stomach!" :D

Ingredients (Makes a big batch)
250 gms fresh coriander (preferably market fresh)
50 gms mint leaves (again, preferably market fresh)
10-12 fat garlic cloves (add more if you like it more garlicky)
6-8 green chillies (as per your heat tolerance)
12-15 cherry tomatoes/2 medium tomatoes (I wanted to finish off my stock of cherry tomatoes)
1 tsp sugar
Salt as per taste

Note: You can skip the tomatoes and add raw mango instead which is more preferable. Depending on the tanginess, add 1-2 mangoes. I did not have any stock.

Remove the mint leaves from the stems, except for the very tender ones, and wash thoroughly. Add it to the grinder along with the garlic, chillies, and tomatoes (eye removed). If you are using raw mango, peel and cut the mangoes lengthwise before adding and discard the stone. Pulse till everything is well grinded and smooth. 
Now cut the coriander at the root and discard any fat stem. Coriander usually has very tender stems and so need not be discarded. Wash thoroughly and with the help of a big kitchen scissors, roughly cut through the leaves. Add them to the grinder and continue pulsing with the other ingredients. At this point, taste the chutney for any additional garlic or chilly and adjust accordingly. Finally, add the salt and sugar and give the final few pulses. You might wonder the reason of not adding everything in one go. Basically, I am trying to recreate the traditional way of grinding the ingredients one at a time on the mortar and pestle (Sil Batta) and also adding ingredients one at a time ensures that everything is ground to a smooth paste without any chunks. 
Transfer the chutney to a clean and dry glass jar/bowl with a tight lid. Keep refrigerated. The recipe makes a big batch of chutney which stays fresh in the refrigerator in a tight lid jar for upto three weeks (if it does not get over by then)! Always use a clean spoon while serving out of the jar and you can see the chutney last even longer!

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