This Mint Chutney wil be a repeat in your kitchen. If you are looking forever to finish the ‘green’ chutney served in A2B, Saravana Bhavan or Sangeetha, this one comes pretty close. It is thick and is ideal for dipping idlis, scooping dosais and licking off your plate!
For the longest time, I made really average chutney. The coconut chutney was watery or split and the tomato chutney would either be too spicy or too tangy or have none of these. I tried all possible recipes I could see. It would work well one day and another day, it would be well, just average. Then, over time – I realized my recipes or methods were ok but the ingredients were not the same always.
Here in Canberra where I live, I get a few varieties of tomatoes. Some are tangy, some are sweet and some are even crisp to a bite and hardly have a tang! I do not get fresh coconut all the time and use either frozen or dessicated coconut and the moisture and freshness of these determine the flavour of a chutney. So, even the BEST recipe requires some tweaking and this one here is mostly fail proof because it is customisable to what you get where you live.
Over the years, I have learnt to make one amazing kickass mint chutney ( this one) , a red chutney ( one super tomato peanut chutney ) and a very delicious coriander chutney. I repeat these all the time and rarely try new ones because these go well with everything!
A good chutney is not a joke. It has to have the right mix of stuff to be delicious. Mess one, and the whole thing goes for a toss!
- Fat is essential as it carries the flavour in this dish. In most south indian chutneys, this is coconut. BUT, the main fat is the oil in which we saute the ingredients. It acts as an emulsifier and spreads the flavours across chutney.
- Volume is also important because without it, the chutney will be watery and not be thick enough to dip into. Most recipes have a nut/legume like channa dal, peanut, chutney dal etc.
- Flavourings like onion, garlic, chilli for sweetness and spice are usually added.
- Most importantly, tartness/acid from tamarind or tomato. A bit of tang lifts everything.
- And finally, the hero – like in this case, the mint and coriander!
Spicy Mint Chutney
- 2 tbsp oil vegetable or neutral oil
- 1 tbsp channa dal/kadala parupu
- 1 tbsp urad dal/ulutham parupu
- 1/2 tsp cumin/jeera
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 slit green chillies or more to your preference
- ½ cup roughly chopped onions
- ½ cup roughly chopped tomatoes
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 cup mint leaves cleaned, without stems
- ½ cup coriander leaves optional, i add based on availability
- ½ tsp tamarind paste or about 1 tbsp thick tamarind water
- 3 tbsp coconut
- salt to taste
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tsp mustard
- 1 tsp urad dal
- 2 slit dried red chillies
- In a pan, add the oil. Once it heats up, add the dals, onion, garlic and green chillies. Saute until everything browns to a golden colour.
- Now, add the cumin seeds, tomato and stir until it breaks down and cooks well.
- Add the turmeric, followed by the herbs. Saute until the herbs wilt fully.
- Add tamarind paste (or water) and hing. Mix well and cook until the water evaporates, if any.
- Finally, turn the stove off and add coconut. I prefer to add salt after grinding, you may add before or after.
- Make a thalipu with given ingredients and add to the chutney.
Watch me make Spicy Pudina Chutney here!
Here are some amazing dishes this will pair beautifully with!
Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help me learn more about what your preferences and other readers.
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