Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Tomato Peanut Chutney

Summer rains are a much sought after phenomenon. The parched earth laps it up and cools itself down. But like everything too much of a good thing is also a problem. Last week we were deluged with rains, had a breather for few days and this weeks seems like a wet one again. While this is the time for fruiting, all the excess water makes them get more leaves which is not good for me the farmer. Hopefully the sun will return and the plants can do their thing.

Here is a sample of vegetables that went out on a recent CSA delivery.

Growing food is a hard thing. Bugs, drought, animals which like to gnaw on the fruit, determining when to water when to stop, when to add compost and when not to, when to harvest and when not to. Not that I did not have before but I am only in awe of people who do this for a living. It is frustrating as it is rewarding. There is no comparison to farm(backyard) picked fresh vegetables. Support your local farmer. The job they do is back breaking without a lot of financial benefits. The taste and the quality is going to be rewarding for you to give it a chance.

I like adding peanuts to chutneys. Just enough so it does not overpower the taste of the main ingredient but just enough to give that smooth texture to the chutney.

Tomato Peanut Chutney
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
  1. 4-5 medium sized ripe tomatoes chopped
  2. 1/4 cup of roasted peanuts (skinned or leave the skin on)
  3. 1/2 cup of chopped red onions or shallots
  4. 3-4 dried or fresh red chilies
  5. 1 tbsp frozen or fresh grated coconut (optional)
  6. a few sprigs of coriander leaves
  7. few cumin, coriander and pepper corns, 1 tsp split urad dal
  8. salt to taste
  9. 2-3 tsp of oil

  1. Heat a wide mouthed pan and add about a half tsp of oil, saute the split urad dal(ulutham paruppu), when it starts to brown add the cumin, coriander, pepper corns and the red chilies and saute for a 1/2 minute more and remove to the blender. You can add the red chilies here or with the onions.
  2. Add the remaining oil to the pan and saute the onions till they start to brown.
  3. Add in the tomatoes and saute till they get mushy.
  4. Add the coconut if using and the peanuts and saute for a minute more.
  5. Add salt and turn off the heat.
  6. Transfer the contents to the blender and when cool blend to a fairly smooth paste.
  7. Serve with idli, dosai or as a spread for toast.

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