Chef Gary Mehigan Whips Up A Fiery Red Bombay Sandwich Chutney
Image Credit: @garymehigan/Instagram

Chef Gary Mehigan – best known for his stint as one of three founding judges on the hit show MasterChef Australia – has spent the last year dipping his toe into the intricacies of Indian cuisine for a documentary in collaboration with National Geographic. Whether he was sampling Gujarati fafda jalebi or exploring the wonders of Kerala during Onam, the Australian-born Chef has clearly taken an interest in getting to know Indian cuisine up close and personal. 

He’s taken a special interest in local street foods and in a recent Instagram post, he was showing off his skills in the chutney department. A classic Bombay Sandwich seemed to be on the menu as he whipped up a fiery red chutney with Kashmiri chillies to go in the sandwich. In the video, he shows how he soaked the chillies in some warm water to rehydrate them and make them ‘plump and juicy’.

To assemble the chutney, he blended up around 20 grams of the soaked chillies (seeds removed), a tablespoon of toasted chana dal, a teaspoon of toasted cumin seeds, a pinch of salt, black salt and chaat masala (specifically the Shan chaat masala) which yielded around a cup of the red chutney. He then added some mayonnaise, or kewpie mayo to make it creamy and rich. 

The Bombay Sandwich is an iconic part of Mumbai’s street food and features mashed spiced potato, layers of vegetables and cheese between two slices of white sandwich bread (Wibbs or Bimbo bread if you want it to be truly nostalgic), toasted in a traditional iron sandwich press that can be clamped shut and grilled directly an open flame. The final product is then liberally garnished with crispy sev for the perfect textural contrast. 

For anyone who’s enjoyed this simple but delicious creation in the streets of Bombay, it probably comes as no surprise that Chef Gary is trying to recreate it at home. And while his chutney already looks good enough to eat through the screen, somehow we wonder whether any Bombay Sandwich will taste quite as good away from the bustle of the city of dreams.