This is a simple Indian chutney. There are three varieties of chutney: fresh chutneys, cooked chutneys, and dry chutneys. Fresh South Indian chutneys are smooth purees made from uncooked ingredients, perhaps seasoned with a tadka of mustard seeds, dal, and curry leaves. They are best freshly made, but they stay good for a couple of days if refrigerated. Made from raw ingredients this type of chutney is unlike most other dishes which have at least some degree of cooking.
Chutneys add zing to a meal and are an essential part of a South Indian meal time. They can be prepared with a limitless variety of ingredients.
Coriander and Coconut Chutney
0.75 cup coriander leaves and stems, packed reasonably tightly
0.75 cup coconut – I use frozen
3 green chillies, or to taste (Western palates perhaps start with 1)
2.5 cm piece ginger root, peeled
1 dried red chilli
salt to taste
squeeze of lemon or lime juice
Fry the red chilli in a little oil until it darkens a little. Grind it with all of the other ingredients. Add salt to taste, and a little more lemon or lime juice if you desire.
This can be made into a coconut chutney by reducing the amount of coriander. Or it can be made into a coriander chutney by reducing the amount of coconut and adding a little jaggery. It is a very flexible recipe.
A little tamarind extract can be added instead of the lemon and lime juice. Add about half a teaspoon.
Add a tadka if you desire. Use black mustard seeds, urad dal, curry leaves and a pinch of asafoetida.
Enjoy! Love to you.