Curry Leaf Chutney/Dip

Curry leaves are probably one of the healthiest greens on the planet. They have numerous health benefits – too many to enumerate. References to this wonder green can be found in ancient Tamizh texts, as early as the 4th. century AD. It is widely used in Indian cooking, especially South India. However, this superfood is now used in cuisines from other parts of the country too. In South India, it is normally added as a garnish or tempering to most dishes. However, the tendency is to discard the leaf while consuming the food, therefore sacrificing all its goodness. My youngest maternal aunt used to give us a sound knock on the head if she found even a single curry leaf left behind after the meal! But housewives tend to overcome this tendency to discard by preparing other dishes using this wonder leaf – including chutneys and powders (taste enhancers). It is my pleasure to present a simple curry leaf chutney here. There are several variations to this dish – I present the simplest of these.

Curry Leaves

8 sprigs curry leaves (kad patta, karuvepelai)
1-2 green chillies
2 tbsp Bengal gram (chana dal, kadalai parupu)
2 tbsp grated coconut
Salt to taste
To Temper
1/2 tsp mustard seeds (sarson, kadugu)
1 tsp split black gram (urad dal, ulutham parupu)
Wash the curry leaves and remove leaves from stalk
Set aside
Roast the Bengal gram till it turns a golden hue
Set aside to cool
Transfer to a blender
Add the curry leaves
Add green chillies. grated coconut and salt
Grind to a smooth paste
Transfer to a serving bowl and set aside
Heat a wok and add mustard seeds
When they begin to splutter, add the split black lentils
Roast till the lentils are golden brown
Add this the the ground chutney
Serve at room temperature with dosa, idli or even steamed brown/red/millet rice

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