From Grandma's Kitchen: 6 Chatpata Chutneys To Complete Your Meals

Some popular and unusual chutneys that will perk up any meal

Aaji began cooking for her rather large family of eight as soon as she hit her teens and earned the title of sugran (one who has mastered the art of cooking) from her in-laws by the time she turned 18. My great grandmother ensured that Aaji picked up cooking as soon as she was old enough to understand the kitchen dynamics. 

Like grandmothers all over the world, Aaji, too, loves feeding anyone who comes home. And once you’ve tasted her food, second helpings become second nature. Back in the day, when they couldn’t afford expensive ingredients, Aaji would utilise all her creativity to make food interesting for her three kids and grandkids. “The trick to make any meal interesting is to add a variety of chutneys and pickles to it,” she says. This is how she would trick us into eating even our least favourite vegetable. 


Also Read: From Grandma's Kitchen: 7 Tangy, Sweet and Spicy Summer Pickles to Perk Up Your Meal

I have had the good fortune of staying with her and Azoba for two years while I pursued my post-graduation degree. Much to my disappointment, Aaji doesn’t believe in fixed measurements, making it very complicated to replicate her recipes. I try! But it’ll be never be the same. More than anything, I have learnt the secret to her efficient cooking- lots and lots of love and patience! 


Here are some of my favourite chutney recipes from the treasure trove of my Aaji’s recipes.


Kauth (Wood apple) Chutney
I have always wondered how the white spherical fruit, which I had so often seen on the vegetable cart of local vendors was eaten. Aaji solved the mystery with a tangy mouth-watering chutney. It tastes best with steaming hot varan-bhaat (dal-rice) and toop (ghee)!


Ingredients:
1 kauth (wood apple)
1½ cup powdered jaggery
2 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp jeera

Method:
Break a wood apple in half. Discard as many big seeds as possible.
Scoop out the remaining paste. Add the paste to a blender.
Add in jaggery, red chilli powder, jeera and salt.
Blend the mixture to chutney. Adjust the salt if required.


Also Read: From Grandma's Kitchen: Goan Samarachi Kodi


Laukichya Garachi Chutney
The best way to eat vegetables is to eat them wholly, without wasting any part, believes Aaji. And hence, came the recipe of this unusual chutney. Made with the flesh of a lauki or bottle gourd, this has to be one of the most unusual condiment that I have eaten. 

Ingredients:
1 cup of lauki cha gar or flesh of bottle gourd) 
3-4 green chillies
2-3 garlic cloves
3-4 tsp curd
1 tsp peanuts
1 tsp jeera
Salt to taste
1 tsp sugar
Few coriander leaves
1 tbsp oil

For tadka
1 tsp oil
½ tsp mustard seeds
a few curry leaves
A pinch of hing

Method: 
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan. Add in jeera, green chillies and garlic cloves. Saute for a minute. Then add the bottle gourd flesh and peanuts. Cook the mixture till the flesh becomes soft and mushy.
Let the mixture cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender. Also add curd, sugar and salt to it. Blend it into a smooth paste. 
Transfer the chutney in a bowl. Add the hot tadka. This chutney tastes best with Thalipeeth.


Jawas (Flaxseed) Chutney
Science has recently unveiled the benefits of omega 3, something that Aaji knew since the beginning. Back in college, while studying nutrition when I told Aaji how important it is to eat jawas daily, she immediately shared this easy and tasty recipe of jawas (flaxseeds) chutney.

Ingredients:
1 cup flax seeds
¼ cup urad dal
¼ cup chana dal
¼ cup peanuts
¼ cup dry copra (dried coconut) slices
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp jeera powder
1 tbsp amchur powder or 1 lemon sized tamarind ball
Salt to taste

Method:
Dry roast flax seeds, urad dal, chana dal, peanuts and dry copra. 
Let it cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender. Add chilli powder, jeera powder and amchur powder/ ball of tamarind to it. 
Grind to a coarse powder. 
Flaxseed chutney is ready. It tastes best with pithla bhakri, steaming rice or roti. 


Also Read: From Grandma's Kitchen: Fish Caldine


Karal Chutney
Another ingredient that has been deemed a superfood, Karal or niger seeds were unknown to me, until my Aaji served it to me one day, mixed in dahi with hot and crispy Thalipeeth. And till today, this remains my favourite way to eat karalachi chutney. Niger seeds are great for boosting immunity and have antioxidant properties. They are also great for getting rid of common cold and cough. 

Ingredients:
1 cup Karal (Niger seeds)
½ cup sesame seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
¼ cup peanuts
¼ cup dry coconut slices
2 tsp red chilli powder
Salt to taste

Method:
Dry roast niger seeds, sesame seeds, cumin seeds, peanuts and dry coconut slices till they release their fragrance.
Let the mixture cool down. Transfer it to the blender.
Add red chilli powder and salt to it.
Grind the chutney to a powder.


Panchamrut Chutney
Puja bhog or prasad is incomplete without panchamrut. But don’t confuse this condiment with the milk-based offering to the Gods popular in northern parts of the country. The main motive is to make a chutney with foods having excellent medicinal properties and different tastes. It has a tangy taste and can liven up any thali. 

Ingredients:
1 cup sesame seeds powder
4 teaspoons tamarind soaked in ½ cup water
½ cup coarsely crushed peanuts
½ cup dry roasted coconut slices
1 tsp red chilli powder
5-6 curry leaves
1 tbsp coriander cumin powder
1 cup jaggery
1 tbsp finely chopped green chillies

For tadka
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
A pinch of hing
1 tsp turmeric powder

Method: 
Prepare tadka by heating oil in a pan. Add in hing, mustard seeds and green chillies. 
Add in the tamarind pulp, jaggery and let the mixture come to a boil.
Now add the sesame seeds powder and peanut powder and dry roasted peanuts. Add in salt to taste. Cover the mixture and let it cook for a minute. 
Panchamrut is ready to be served.

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