Chunky Pineapple Chutney
Do you know that the English word “chutney” originated in India? Relish probably came about from the need to preserve vegetables in the winter, and it may have originated in India (says Wikipedia) which is interesting.
Indian food focuses more on the importance of relish or chutneys (cooked fruits, herbs, vegetables etc) as part of our daily meals. We all love something on the side to our meals, isn’t it? Every house hold does seasonal pickles, relishes, chutneys that are such a treat to the taste buds and also great for your health as we focus on the importance of what the nature is offering us according to the season.
When we say chutneys, we immediately think of green coriander chutney or say mint chutney that goes well with most foods and not to forget the coconut chutney that adorns the king of all meals viz. breakfast.
My intention when attempting this recipe was simple – Make a relish / chutney that is not squashed or pureed or ground (even though I had a ripe pineapple). I wanted the fruit to shine and show its presence in every bite hence I have chosen to cut them into chunks. The best decision ever!!
I loved working with sweet paprika as it takes the pineapple to a different level. The sweet notes and the smokiness lends a great depth to the dish. This one ingredient transforms this relish amazingly well and I am glad I didn’t use the red chilli powder at all.
Post cooking, when I first tasted the relish, I went for another spoonful and then picked a roti and smeared the relish into it and enjoyed it and said to myself .. this is what a chunky relish is supposed to do. A piece with every bite ensures the flavours amalgamates so well. Sweet, sour, spicy all at the same time!
This relish goes well with parathas (plain or stuffed both), theplas (forget the mango chundo), breads and khichdi too.
Don’t be surprised to hear if I tell you that the relish / chutney has been paired with khichdi (a humble dish which has been in the limelight since last few weeks) too. Last week, husband had been nursing a very bad stomach infection and the side effects of comforting him in such times is eating khichdi with him too. Since I made the relish, I could happily eat the same for atleast 2 meals and 2 consequetive days. Long story short, this is the current favourite at home now. Husband has asked me to make another batch after he is back from his official trip.
The prep work and the cooking part is less than 30 minutes but I guarantee when you make this the first time, be prepared to make a big batch for the next time! Your family will love this as much as we did! Read the simple recipe and the notes below and try to make a batch today!!
Recipe for Chunky Pineapple Chutney
(my version of a sweet and spicy chunky pineapple relish)
Prep Time – 10 minutes
Cook Time – 15 minutes
- Ingredients for approx. 200 gms of Relish
- Half a pineapple cored and diced into small chunks
- Sweet Paprika Powder – 2 tsps
- Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
- Whole red chillies – 2 or 3 nos. broken into pieces
- A pinch of sugar
- Oil – 1.5 tblsps
- Salt as per taste
- Heat a kadhai, add oil and once its heated, add the mustard seeds and allow it to crackle.
- Add the broken whole red chillies and then add the diced pineapple pieces.
- Cook it well (don’t cover with a lid else the relish will turn goey with all the extra moisture from the steam) on medium heat with a quick stir in between.
- Once the pineapples reduce slightly in volume, add the salt, sweet paprika powder and a pinch of sugar. Stir well and continue cooking it until it reduces in volume and all the moisture is absorbed.
- In about 10 minutes or so of cooking this relish, you will see a fine layer of oil on the sides which means its time to switch off the flame and allow the mixture to cool before consuming it, preferably a day later.
- Stays good for a day at room temperature but would advice you to store the same in a clean glass bottle / container in the fridge. Stays good for atleast 15 days.
- Most fruit vendors peel the skin and remove the tough bits of the pineapple before packing the same in a plastic bag. I get the same done as it saves time. I however ensure, I take a bag along with me & once I bring it home, clean the pineapple with some water once before storing it in the refrigerator.
- Addition of sweet paprika powder instead of our regular red chilli powder is essential to lend a sweet and smoky flavor to the pineapples. It doesn’t make the relish spicy at all. If you like more spicy, add a little extra paprika powder.
- The taste of this relish improves day by day. You will find it turning sweeter too within 2 days of making the same. Ensure the sugar is only a pinch and not more or you will find your relish too sweet as days pass. Sugar gives it a good glaze and balances the sourness too.
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