As you may have figured out by now, AK & I are great spice (chilly) lovers. And our love for garlic goes even a level further. So I make this chutney pretty regularly and stock it in the fridge. It’s oh-so-easy and goes with all kinds of Indian dishes, and especially so with dal-chawal! In my more adventurous days, I’ve been known to use it as a sandwich spread, but please try that only at your own risk. Such concentrated chilly exposure can prove to have VERY disasterous results, the morning after.
I know it looks harmless, but 1/2 a tsp of this along with the meal is enough for a chilly explosion!! One of my numerous friends from Pune (Maharashtra) taught me to make this. When I tried to Google it and add an explanation link today, there doesn’t seem to be a food item by the name but just a town in Maharashtra called Kharda! Maybe the chutney’s name is a made-up one!
Here’s what I used, for a jar full:
40 green chillies
30 pods of garlic
Juice of 2 lemons
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Here’s how I made it:
I fried the chillies and garlic on high heat for about 10 mins. This should be done carefully because initially the chillies will squeal and sputter but some of them expand because of the trapped air and explode. If the seeds get in your eyes, it can be pretty painful. So stir it around but be careful!!
It’s time to stop when all the chillies have blistered and the garlic has browned.
I allowed the mixture to cool to room temperature before transferring it to my mortar and pestle. I ground it slightly for a minute.
I stopped to add the salt and juice of 1 lemon.
I continued to grind until I achieved a coarse paste.
Then I transferred the mixture to a clean glass bottle. I squeezed the remaining lemon into the mortar pestle and used a small spatula to scrape up the remainder of the paste and mix it in with the lemon juice. Then I added this to the bottle and stirred it up!!
Screwed the cap on and store in the fridge.
Because of the salt and lemon juice, it stays in the fridge for about 2 weeks, but usually we finish it up much before it’s time is done!!
Note on the proportions:
These are not an exact science and can be modified to your taste. If I happen to have nice big fat garlic cloves then I use 1:2 garlic and chillies. If the garlic is the tiny desi variety, then 2:3.