Sooner or later, if you love good Indian food and make it often, you're going to need a recipe for both these chutneys. The harichutney and Imli chutney - one spicy and refreshing, the other hot and sweet are pillars of the chutney community. You'll find them served either separately or together depending on the dish but more often than not they go hand in hand like bread and butter.
Especially popular with street foods and other deep-fried finger foods all through the country, they add so much to each bite as palate cleansers and tantalizing the taste buds, all at once. Be it vadas, samosas, pakoras or bhel, these chutneys are like dollops of magic that make the dish.
I certainly couldn't do without these and the homemade version are so much more superior than the watery insipid versions commercially available that I guarantee you'll be making these again and again.
Not to mention they come together in a snap.
Cilantro Green Chutney (Hari Chutney)
1-1/2 cups packed fresh cilantro leaves
2-3 Thai green chilies
juice of 1 lime
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup raw peanuts shelled and excess skin removed
1/3 cup roughly diced red onion
1/4 cup water
In a food processor or blender capable of making pastes, (If you are in the US, I highly recommend the Magic Bullet for this) add the cilantro, green chilies, lime juice, red onion, salt, peanuts, and water.
Process until it is a fine paste with no solids. Set aside with the bread until ready to eat.
Sweet Tamarind Chutney (Imli Chutney)
1/2 cup tamarind concentrate (Swad brand preferred)
1/3 cup molasses or jaggery
1 tbs sugar
1 tbs whole coriander seeds
1/2 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tsp red chilly powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs water (only needed if too thick)
Combine all the above ingredients in a small saucepan.
Stir on low heat until all the ingredients have combined. If using jaggery, it will take several minutes for all the jaggery to melt into the mixture.
Taste and adjust sweetness.
Empty into a food processor or blender capable of making fine pastes. Blend for a few minutes until all the spices have broken down and the mixture is blended to a paste as fine & smooth as possible.
Empty the mixture into a sieve and using a spoon push through. Get as much of the chutney sieved through as possible and especially spoon the chutney coating the bottom of the sieve.
Discard the remnants in the sieve. Taste and adjust seasoning one final time.
If the chutney is too thick, add 1/2 to 1 tbs water and stir to thin. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.