In Maharashtrian cuisine, dry chutneys have a special place. Rich in essential oils, good fatty acids, protein, and antioxidants, they are a staple in everyday meals. At any given time, a Marathi kitchen will have at least two dry chutneys prepared and stored in airtight jars to be enjoyed with chapati and bhakri. Read on below to find out more about some popular dry chutneys that are part of Maharashtra’s food culture.
Chutneys are a delightful component of every Indian cuisine for their sweet, spicy, and zingy qualities. In Maharashtrian cuisine, too, chutneys have a very special place. The pud, dry chutneys, or powdered chutneys in particular are crowd pleasers, and in nearly every Marathi household, the remonstration, "It is a chutney, not a subzi," is an inevitable part of mealtime banter.
This is because, although the chutney is a side dish to be had in measured amounts only, its flavour and taste often make a good dry chutney the hero of a meal. Lathering chapatis with sheng-dana (groundnut) chutney or bhakri with lagoon (garlic) chutney are veritably more inviting options on days when the subzi is less than appealing.
In many households, little children are also served a poli-chutney roll, which is basically ghee and any chutney available in the house is spread onto the chapati, which is rolled into the small, cylindrical wrap. At any given moment, a Marathi household will have at least one or two such chutneys in the kitchen, without which a wholesome meal would be incomplete. Since most of these chutneys are made from nuts and seeds, they are rich in nutrition content and, when mixed with ghee or oil, are exceedingly rich sources of antioxidants. Read on below to find out more about some popular pud chutneys:
Shengdana (groundnut) Chutney
The groundnut chutney is perhaps one of the most popular, tongue-tickling chutneys in Maharastrian cuisine and brings out the richness of the sheng-dana. Solapur’s sheng-dana chutney is well-known across the region for its distinct recipe, which is slightly spicier and involves adding generous quantities of garlic to the groundnut mix.
Til (sesame) Chutney
Til chutney is a great source of essential nutrients and proteins and can be consumed every day to boost immunity. Mixing til chutney with raw oil is a good way to make it into a greasy dip, which helps treat digestive issues and wards off stomach trouble. Til chutney is also extremely durable and can be made and stored in large quantities. It tastes absolutely smashing with bhakri.
Javas (flaxseed) Chutney
Javas or flaxseed chutney, is advocated by several nutritionists and experts, particularly as part of weight-loss regimes. Having 1-2 tablespoons of javas chutney every day with roti and ghee ensures that essential Omega-3 fatty acids make their way into the body. These are good fats that help reduce inflammation and regulate cholesterol levels.
Lasoon (garlic) Chutney
An utter burst of taste and lip-smacking goodness, the lasoon chutney is a much sought-after accompaniment with vada pav, pithla bhakri, and amti bhaat. Garlic chutney is often made by adding a bit of dried coconut, which gives it a hint of oil, and tonnes of chilli powder, which makes it a spicy and tasty blend. However, be sure to pop a mint after having this chutney, especially at lunchtime!
Curry Leaves (kadhipatta) Chutney
The curry leaf chutney is like the podi chutney and goes really well with southern Indian breakfast favourites like dosas, idlis, and uttapams. Mixing the chutney into ghee to be had with dosa or drizzling it over warm idlis makes for soothing meals. The chutney tastes great when made using curry leaves fried with dried red chillies, a bit of sesame, and cumin.