Tuesday 25 February 2014


Hello everyone! After almost 4 weeks here I am to share with you my most awaited post. I wasn't sick or away, life has been incredibly busy over the last few weeks. So, today I will not bore you with a long story. It's a very simple and my favourite Tomato Chutney recipe that I will share with you today. If you have read about "The Legendary Chicken Curry " my first post on Bengali cuisine, I talked about an elaborate multi course meal that is enjoyed in every Bengali household and chutney is served as the last or second last course after the mains and just before desserts (if any). It is an indispensable item on the menu in every Bengali occasion be it wedding, birthday, or even religious functions. Without Chutney, be it of any kind a hearty Bengali meal is just incomplete!

Back home I used to see my mother making chutneys of different kinds. Tomato, mixed fruit, pineapple, date, raw mango, plums and even star fruit to name a few. Maa was a chutney expert with the variety of chutney recipes that she had mastered over time. We sisters, including my father were Chutney devotees..soo ma would make it every single day for us. My husband enjoys this Chutney with rice as a last course, my personal favourite is Tomato Chutney and Poppadums (or papad), to me it's "a match made in heaven"!
In my childhood days I had some strange eating habits (and that is something I still do ;), I like to mix my share of chutney with some chicken curry. Yummm!! Life is too short to get serious and sometimes it is fun to be weird: D Soo try it, it tastes amazing..:)

Okay, so enough of the Chutney story and now it's back to business, the recipe! I made this exactly the way Maa (my mother) makes it . For those of you who are not much familiar with Bengali Cuisine we use a special 5 Spice or (Panch Phoron) for tempering the oil. The Bengali 5 spice comprises of the following: Nigella seeds, Mustard seeds, Fennel seeds, Cumin and Fenugreek seeds. I also roasted a teaspoon of the above combination of spices and ground them to sprinkle on top just before serving. Some like to add a whole dry red chilli, we personally prefer not to. But if you like go for it and add when you temper the oil with the spices. Alternatively, you may even roast a proportion of the chilli (depending on the amount of heat and spiciness you want to add to your tomato chutney) along with the spices and ground everything together to sprinkle on top. This recipe should yield 4 generous servings.
To make Tomato Chutney you will need:
6 medium size ripe Tomatoes
1 teaspoon cooking oil(mustard oil recommended)
few pinches of turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon of the Bengali 5 Spice (Panch Phoron)
3-4 tablespoon of Sugar (add acc to your taste)
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
Handful of Sultanas or raisins
1 teaspoon of dry roasted and ground bengali 5 Spice (Panch Phoron) to sprinkle.
Once you have all your ingredients ready follow these simple steps.
Step1: Rinse tomatoes and chop them into cubes.
Step 2: Take a thick bottomed pan or wok. Add the oil.
Step 3: Once the oil is hot enough add the spices and once they start to splutter add the tomatoes.
Step 4: To the above add turmeric powder and pinch of salt.
Step 5: Mix and stir well and cover on low to medium flame. Once the tomatoes are cooked and start to melt break every lump with your spatula to make it mushy as shown in the picture.
Step 6: Add the raisins or sultanas.
Step 7: Add sugar. Mix everything well. Bring it to boil .Cover and cook for another 5-7 mins. Turn off heat.
Step 8: Add lemon juice.
Step 9. Transfer into a serving bowl and sprinkle the ground spices. Allow to cool. Tomato Chutney is usually at it's best when served chilled.
You may even enjoy this chutney as a side to your favourite Indian bread. I like it with parathas. Try some fusion. Dip your favourite savoury cracker and enjoy. What's stopping you!
I couldn't believe my 22 months old little boy finished almost half the bowl LOL;
Eat well and be happy!
Have a wonderful week ahead:)


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With deep care


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