After my last post on idli, I realized that some of you might think that was coconut chutney in the last picture. You are forgiven if your thoughts wandered coconut way, as the colour is really close to the roasted peanut chutney I actually made, to go with idlis or on wraps as a spread. Nice bonus with this option–peanuts are more readily available than coconuts. SOS Peanut alert! If you’re allergic, just replace peanuts with yellow split peas in this recipe.
1 cup tender raw red peanuts
Salt to taste
1 hot green pepper, thinly sliced(optional!)
1 tsp coconut or sesame oil
¼ cup dry red chillies
¼ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp urad seeds
4 curry leaves
|Pots n pans
• Dry roast peanuts till peanuts start cracking & get redder still. Set aside.
• Dry roast red hot peppers. Set aside.
• Grind both roasted peanuts(with skin intact) & hot peppers with a little water in food processor.
• Add salt to taste.
• Heat oil in sauté pan. Add mustard seeds, when they splutter, add urad, when they turn golden, add curry leaves, hot green pepper if using & hing.
• Pour spice oil over peanut chutney.
SOS you might wonder why such a hefty dose of dry red hot pepper! I mean 1/4 cup does seem like a lot of red hot peppers, doesn’t it!! Let’s step into India for a minute to see why–So many varieties of dry red pepper. My mom would buy a mix of kashmiri red pepper with regular red chili pepper. the kashmiri anointed foods a bright red, but barely emitted any heat, while the regular chili pepper had oomphs of heat, but lacked colour. Dry red chilies available in grocery stores here in Canada are cayenne pepperish in flavour, meaning quite mild so it sort of forces my hand to be a bit liberal in usage. You know your chillies best, so use less or more depending on intrinsic heat & how you like your chutney spice quotient-high or low! When fresh red peppers are available, I’ll easily roast, peel & grind together with roasted peanuts and dry red hot pepper for an added smoky sweet flavour.
Ever since I made this chutney, a friend begged & pleaded for the source. I confess– I’m lucky! where I live, there are grocery stores of every culture imaginable. I picked up my tender raw peanuts from a Chinese grocery store. The right peanuts make a huge difference to your chutney. Peanuts need to be tender, and small in size, never large or of a certain age.. If you can’t find them in a regular grocery store, try a bulk food store, we have bulk barn in Canada where you can take just as much as you need. Its a great way to sample fare before deciding whether or not you want to make a large purchase.
In addition to being every child’s favourite sandwich filling, peanuts are a great source of mono-saturated fats, the kind that comes from a healthy mediterranean diet.
Prepared like a pickle, spiced chutneys can be dated as far back as 500BC. Originating in India, this method of preserving food was subsequently adopted by the Romans and later British empires, who then started exporting this to the colonies, Australia and America. The British Royal Navy even used lime pickle or chutney to ward off scurvy on journeys to the new world. So chutneys have been around a long time..
Peanut chutney pairs great on wraps, or as a dip or idlis! Hope you enjoyed this super simple peanut chutney recipe.