Any South Indian breakfast delicacy will be accompanied by the humble coconut chutney – always! Crisp dosas or fluffy idlis are first dipped in this inviting concoction of coconut and chillies and then relished. And then you feel that you are all ready to face the day!

Traditionally chutney was ground in a stone grinder or a big mortar and pestle. The flavors emitting from chutney ground this way is simply unbeatable and no match for the modern electric mixer. Note that I have nothing against mixers. In fact the humble chutney is made every day in our home in a mixer too. And all the while the mortar and pestle just sits there, waiting to be picked up and pounded. Amidst all the gadgets, it still sits there with pride, knowing however much we ignore it, it can never lose the battle of authentic taste against the modern mixer. One of these days I shall see that the mortar and pestle gets its due attention. For now its time to move on to the recipe.

 

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 A must-have accompaniment to South Indian breakfast dishes like idlis, dosas, vadas, bondas and many more!  This is a versatile chutney made the South Indian way and serve as accompaniment to dishes of your choice! The key is to make and serve it fresh!

 Here are two varieties of coconut chutney, a green one and a white coconut chutney, both made regularly in South Indian homes to accompany idlis, dosas and vadas.

 

Coconut Chutney

South Indian coconut chutney

Ingredients

White chutney

  • Coconut – 1 cup grated (fresh)
  • Green chillies – 2 – 3 (add or take as per preferred spice level)
  • Ginger – 1/4 inch piece
  • Hing (asafoetida – 1/4 tsp)
  • Curd/ yogurt – 1/4 cup tbsp or to taste (or juice of ½ lime)
  • Salt – to taste
  • Water – as required
  • 1 tbsp roasted gram dal (fried gram/ huri kadle)
  • 3 to 4 curry leaves (optional)

Tempering for white chuteny (optional)

  • oil – 1/2 tsp
  • mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp

For green chutney

  • Coconut – 1 cup grated (fresh)
  • Green chillies – 2 – 3 (add or take as per preferred spice level)
  • Ginger – 1/4 inch piece
  • Hing (asafoetida – 1/4 tsp)
  • juice of half a lime (or per taste)
  • Coriander leaves – 1/4 cup or a little more
  • 1 small onion (optional)

Directions

For white chutney

  1. Grind together all the ingredients with few tablespoons water till smooth.
  2. If adding the tempering, heat oil, add mustard and let crackle. Add curry leaves, remove pan from heat and pour the tempering onto the chutney. Mix.
  3. Best served fresh with idlis, dosas, vadas, uttappams, upma, set dosa.

For green chutney

  1. Grind together all the ingredients with some water as needed for consistency. In place of lime juice you may add some curd too. Best served fresh with idlis, dosas, vadas, bondas, rottis, upma, uttappams, chapathis.

Roasted gram/onion is added for consistency/thickness. Also gives a slightly different flavor to the regular chutney.
Adjust quantity of green chillies as per spice level desired.

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