As someone who loves a good meal, cooking one, came to me as a natural passion. I belong to a family where meal times consisted of not just food, but also noisy conversation centered around the events of the day and discussing the menu for the next. (ah yes, we are a greedy lot! )

For the most part of my life so far, my contribution in the kitchen was assisting mom and my duties were limited, to chopping veggies and laying the table. Then along came the great Indian wedding, and I was suddenly the queen of my very own kingdom. My curiosity about this magical world, coupled with an enthusiastic sous-chef (my husband, Vineet), led me to take on the challenge of preparing meals on a daily basis, and not succumbing to the convenience of hiring a cook.

This blog is a product of my experiments with food (not all are life threatening :D) for my fellow culinary enthusiasts - especially the newly weds and hungry bachelors and is dedicated to the women who've inspired me in the kitchen;
Aji (s),Ma and Nigella Lawson.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Methaamba ( Raw mango chutney with mustard & fenugreek)

One of the biggest advantages of living in Singapore, is that I get my hands on my favorite fruit almost all year around. Whether is the Jumbo-sized Thai ones, or the sweet-golden Malaysian ones, Mangoes seriously are my absolute favourite! Raw or ripe, mangoes are extremely versatile and delicious. Raw mangoes especially go very well with a host of spices, mustard, fenugreek, cumin, red chillies.... you name it! All these combined to form a fragrant, tangy-chutney 'Methaamba' is one of my childhood obsessions, where I'd end up eating copious amounts of this with warm rotis, bread, and also straight from the jar.
Stored in a airtight jar or bottle, this will keep very well in the refrigerator for about 10-12 days.

2 Raw Mangoes, peeled and cubed into 1/2" pieces
2 tsp Vegetable / Olive oil
1-1/2 tsp Mustard seeds (rai)
1 tsp Fenugreek seeds (methi-dana)
1 pinch Asafoetida (heeng), powdered
3/4 tsp Red Chilli powder
2-3 tbsp Jaggery, grated, alternatively 2 tbsp Brown/white sugar
Salt, to taste (about 3/4 tsp)

1.) Wash, peel and cube the raw mango into 1/2" pieces. Set aside.
2.) Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Add the mustard seeds and asafoetida powder. Wait for the mustard to start sputtering, and add the fenugreek seeds. Fry for a few seconds till the fenugreek seeds are lightly browned.
3.) Add the raw mango, and red chilli powder and saute for a few minutes till the mango cubes begin to soften. Add the jaggery/ sugar, salt and 1/2 a cup of water. Allow the contents to bubble away till the mango cubes are soft and fully cooked.
4.) At this stage, the liquid in the chutney, should begin to thicken and not be too runny. If the liquid is too thick and sticky, add a little water to adjust the consistency.
5.) Switch off the heat and allow the 'methaamba' to cool. Transfer to an air tight jar and store in the refrigerator.

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