During my initial days of my banking career, before marriage, I had to report for work an hour before the other staff came in, so I could learn the ropes without the disturbance of customers at my desk . Some of my colleagues commuted from afar, so they used to be at work at 8 AM and so breakfast at work was inevitable. Many of them used to get idlis for breakfast every single day and the sides for the Idlis would be a variety of chutneys and sambars. Pudina chutney, tomato garlic chutney, red chilli chutney, andhra tomato sesame chutney, tamil nadu white coconut chutney, onion chutney, tomato thokku etc. Every day a different side or chutney, rendered in itself a totally different taste to the idlis. I always enjoyed going to work early and settling in, taking in the peace of the mornings, checking mails, and having a healthy breakfast reading the news on the paper on my desk, and grabbing my cuppa. When I think back on those days of crazy deadlines, sales targets, customer interactions and late meetings, I cant believe it is a world, that I have left far far behind!!!
Whenever I make chutneys, I always recollect those days with a smile….
1 Cup Roasted and Peeled Peanuts.
1/2 Big Red Onion or 1 Medium Onion.
3 Dry Red Chillies.
3 Garlic Flakes.
Small pinch of jaggery.
Small Tamarind Piece soaked in 1/2 cup water.
Pinch of Turmeric.
1 Tsp Broken Urad Dhal.
- Add a spoon of oil in a kadai and allow to heat. Pop in the chopped garlic and red chillies and a pinch of turmeric and saute it for a few minutes.
- Now add the chopped onions and saute them well.
- Switch off the flame and allow to cool.
- Warm the tamarind soaked in water in the microwave for about a minute.
- In a mixer add the roasted peanuts (with skin removed), the contents of the kadai, jaggery, tamarind with the water, salt and pulse to a smooth chutney consistency.
- Season with mustard, urad dhal, curry leaves and hing.