Mango Chutney


  Mango tree

We are well into the mango season.The kitchen counter is covered with rows of alfonsoes awaiting their fate.It is too hot to eat a cereal based breakfast and a bowl of chilled mango cubes is a perfect way to start the day. Since these mangoes have been ripened on the tree they have that especially real flavour. A tang not to be tasted anywhere in the world.
Here is a way of making the mango season last longer:

1 large onion chopped fine
3 " fresh adrak ginger. grated
1 pod of lasun garlic peeled

I kg raw mangoes, grated
5 cups of sugar

1 tsp garam masala
2 tsps red chilli powder
1/2 tsp dalchini cinnamon powder
1 tsp elaichi cardomom powder

3/4 cup vinegar
1 tsp salt

3 tbsp almonds blanched, peeled and sliced
3 tbsp raisins.

Puree the onions, ginger and garlic along with 1 tbsp water. Strain and remove all the juice.
Bring the grated mangoes and sugar to a boil over high heat. Reduce fire and cook for ten minutes.Add the juice of ginger, garlic and onions as well as all the masalas. Cook till the mixture thickens and is almost set. Add the salt and vinegar and continue to cook for a further five minutes.Take off the fire, stir in the almonds and raisins and let it cool.
Bottle in sterilised jars.
Keep for a week before opening. This allows the flavours to combine and develop.

For a lot more on pickles visit where Rushina interviews Usha of "Usha's Pickle Digest" and gives you a chance to win a copy of that wonderful book.

Green Tomato Chutney


Mapusa Market, Goa

Friday is market day in Mapusa, a small town in the heart of Bardez district in Goa. It's madness there, picking your way through cauliflowers, cabbage, and beans of all kind. And baby clothes, plastic tablecloths and small wooded stools. And 'antiques', bedcovers and herbal medicines. Plus the tribal women from Karnataka, women with their mirror worked cloth bags waiting to make a killing on some unsuspecting soul, who is most likely to be an Indian tourist. It's amazing how European and British tourists learn, in two days flat, how to drive a hard bargain. It is more difficult to extract a 1 rupee coin out of a backpacker's pocket than to perform dental surgery. So the tribal women are in for some more rude shocks during the day.

Meanwhile we enjoy the riot of colour, the smells of dried fish and spices, the goan sausages and papayas and the sounds of a thousand voices in Konkani .
Since I'm into low calorie and vegetarian recipes right now I see the vegetables more than anything else. Tomatoes are all over the place. Green tomatoes particularly caught my eye. I never seem to get them when I want them. Some Portuguese recipes  and, by association, Goan ones too call for tomate verde ( let me clarify, these are not Tomatillos ). Right now In Maharashtra, the tomatoes have been harvested and are a brillant red. Just right for puree but not for chutney. Here is one of my favourite green tomato chutney recipes.

Green Tomatoes, Mapusa, Goa


2 apples
1 kg green tomatoes
1/4 kg sambar onions (shallots)
1 clove garlic, crushed
150 gm kismis / raisins
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh grated ginger
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
400 ml / 2 full cups malt vinegar
175 gms brown demerara sugar or half brown sugar and half jaggery

Peel the apples, remove the core and chop into pieces.Make fine slices from the tomatoes. Chop the shallots .

In a pressure cooker put layers of tomato slices, apples and onions. Add the garlic, raisins, salt , ginger, chilli powder, and half the vinegar.Close cooker and put on the weight. Cook for 10 minutes after first whistle.Take off the fire and bring pressure down by holding the cooker under a running tap.Open the cooker, stir in the gur and brown sugar and the rest of the vinegarMix well..Now let the mixture simmer in the open cooker till the chutney thickens. Stir often to ensure it does not stick to the bottom of the cooker.When the chutney is the right consistency and fairly thick, take off fire and fill sterilized jars with the mixture upto 1/2 inch from the top. Cover jars whiile still hot.
Keep refrigerated after opening.
This is quick to make, a lovely accompaniment to any Indian dish, yummy with roti and good with any meat dish, Indian or Western.

Another green tomato recipe

Apricot Chutney


It is getting really cold here in spite of my protestations that winter in Pune is non existent and equivalent to a Meditteranean summer. Actually Delhi temperatures are now some degrees below 0. And that affects us too even though we are a 1000 miles away.
So one thinks of soups and stews and slow cooked meats with thick gravies. With that sort of food there is nothing like a good, piquant chutney and what better than this one made from a recipe given to me by my mother. It is made with dried fruits and raisins. It cooks up really fast in a pressure cooker the use of which Id suggest for several chutneys.


  • 2 cups dried apricots
  • 4 cups raisins
  • 4 large onions chopped
  • 1 1/4 pints vinegar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 2 tsps lal mirchi /red chilli powder
  • 2 tbsp ginger, ground
  • 1/2 tbsp dhania/ coriander powder
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 2 tbsp mustard , prepared.

Soak the apricots in boiling hot water for an hour.

Chop the onions and put into a pressure cooker. Add the vinegar and simmer in the uncovered cooker for 10 minutes.
Now add the apricots, raisins, salt, chilli powder, ground ginger and coriander.Remember to check that the cooker is not more than half full. Bring to high pressure ( the whistling stage), reduce heat a bit and cook for 20 minutes.
Take off the fire and allow the cooker to come back to room temperature before opening the lid. Stir in the sugar and mustard. Put the cooker back on a low fire and cook till sugar dissolves, then boil till the chutney had thickened to the right consistency. Stir it frequently in between. Check the seasoning. Bottle while hot in sterilised jars. Fill the jars upto 1/2 inch from the top. Cover while still hot. This keeps well for at least three months.