Tomato Chutney and India

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We got back from India on January 5th, and I already miss it. After three weeks in India, I had a rhythm to my day. I had mastered bathing from a bucket, I was understanding what people were saying, I wasn’t afraid of riding in the car, Cows in the street no longer shocked me, I even had saris damnit! Coming back to America felt like waking up to a dream I had. I desperately wanted to close my eyes and find the place I was in before, but of course, it was gone as all dreams are in the morning. 

These are a few of my favorite pictures from the trip:

 

I tasted so many wonderful new foods and flavors while in India, and I am already trying to replicate them all in my kitchen. I had muli (radish) paratha (a new favorite bread), gajur halva, pakoras of every kind, sabzis of all styles, more dosas than  I can count, and lots of other things I can’t remember right now 🙂 I will slowly cook my way through my list of favorites. I have wrote down the names of many dishes and even step by step directions for some.

For now, I wanted to post this simple tomato chutney. Now that I’ve had it, this recipe seems so obvious, but I had never thought of it before. My husband made this chutney on the first day we were in India, and I was so upset that he had made so little of it. I wanted to eat it like a soup. It went so perfectly with breads of any sort.

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Life in the U.S. is the same as always. I am working. My husband is working. We are cooking. We are now adding “buy a house” to our to do list which is exciting but mostly overwhelming. How do people find time for anything?


Tomato Chutney

**Makes enough chutney for 4

Ingredients:

The measurements for the spices are estimates. You will want to adjust for your own tastes.

  • 4-6 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1 or 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • about 1 tbsp jaggery in small pieces
  • 1 or 2 chili peppers, chopped (depending on how hot you want it)
  • 2 tbsp oil

Directions:

  1. In a kadhai or heavy bottom sauce pan, heat oil. Add cumin seeds and let pop for a few seconds. Add chopped tomatoes. Begin cooking on medium heat. You will want your chutney to have a sauce like consistency, not too thick and not too thin.
  2. When the tomatoes are about half way to the desired consistency, add salt, chili powder, coriander powder, and turmeric.
  3. In the last few minutes of cooking, add jaggery and chili. Add the jaggery slowly and taste as you go if this is your first time cooking with it. You may want to add less or more to taste. Cook until ingredients are combined and desired consistency is reached.
  4. Serve warm or room temperature with breads.

*If your chutney becomes too thick, add a little water. You may need to adjust seasoning some if you do this.

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