- Eggplant/Kathirikai/Brinjal – 3
- Tomatoes – 2
- Onion – 1
- Green chilly – 4
- Oil (Sesame preferable) – 2 tspn
- Mustard seeds – 1 tspn
- Dry red chilly – 1 or 2
- Urad dal – 1 tspn
- Curry leaves – 5
- Salt to taste
- Water – 2 cups
South-Indian Chutney Recipes | Side dish for Idli-Dosai
I realized that taste differs according to our age. The thing which you liked so much when you were young may not be liked at all today. And the thing which you hated so much when you were young might be liked so very much today! The recipe on discussion today is this Kathrikai chutney (Brinjal chutney or Eggplant chutney). I never knew that Brinjal is called Eggplant until I was here to the US. Just imagine if this eggplant yielded eggs of various variety like chicken eggs, duck eggs etc 😛
This eggplant chutney recipe is one which my mom used to make often. When I was young, I hated this chutney. Do not know why, may be because of its unappealing color that it tasted so bland to me then. Whereas today, not just the taste of this kathirikai chutney recipe is liked by me so much but also its color looks much appealing to me. The color of this brinjal chutney is very interesting – mostly 8d622f and hither thither 905255. Oh the numbers? Seems each color, whatever color you see in the world can be represented using this 6-digit number notation called hexadecimal color representation. So 8d622f is to golden or dusty or brownish and 905255 is to lavender or pink variations. I always wished if I can buy a nice saree with this color combination 8d622f ~ 905255 😀 Uhh.. but when you look into my photographs of eggplant chutney, it might not portrait much of the lavender. May be I should picture it nicely the next time I make this recipe of Kathirikai chutney and update this post.
The recipe for Kathirikai chutney is so easy and is also very quick to make. For any chutney or vadai recipe, shallots/chinna vengayam/red pearl onions will taste good. But here they are quite costly and so I compromise my taste by using only large onions :).
How to make Kathirikai Chutney (Eggplant Chutney) – with step by step pictures
[Each image can be enlarged when Clicked]
Wash the eggplants, tomatoes, green chillies and onions. Chop the eggplant, onion and tomatoes. Slit the green chillies slightly. When you are using large amount of brinjal, always cut them and put them into a bowl of water since they will turn black if exposed to air. Take the pressure cooker and add all the chopped vegetables – the eggplant, chillies, tomatoes (a handful), onions (a handful). We need little tomatoes and onions for tempering, so I used a handful while pressure cooking them. Add water. Be careful while adding water since after pressure cooking, the eggplant and tomatoes will give more water, so add water just until the level of vegetables in the cooker. Add little salt.
Pressure cook them for 2 whistles. Switch off flame.
Meanwhile when the pressure is getting released by itself we’ll make ready for tempering the chutney. Place a dry wok in medium flame.
When the wok is hot add oil. When the oil is nicely hot add the mustard seeds. Let the mustard seeds splutter thoroughly. Add urad dhal, and pinched red chilly.
After 5 to 7 secs add in the remaining chopped onions and curry leaves. Fry the onion for 2-3 minutes.
In the meantime, open the cooker.
Drain the water (reserve it for later cooking).
Mash the vegetables nicely. When my mom makes this brinjal chutney at home, she used to call me at this stage, since I like to mash them with that keerai matthu (motar to mash cooked greens). When you’re making big amount just give a slight turn in a blendor but be careful if they’re hot. Cool them a little and then blend just for a second.
We’re still in the tempering process… once the onions are fried for 2-3 minutes, add in tomatoes and cook them well until the tomatoes become translucent. My mom does not add tomatoes while tempering. But I like to have them nicely soured so that it goes too good with Idlies and Dosas 🙂 . So if you have a tongue for much of sourness then you can add a little more tomatoes.
Once the tomatoes become translucent add in the mashed chutney. Switch off the stove. We do not want the chutney to boil. Mix them well.
Mix in the water which we drained from the cooker. Add water according to the level of consistency you wish.
Mix well. Check the salt. Chutney ready to be served.
3Ts [ Tips | Tricks | Tactics and Secrets ] to make Katharikai Chutney/Brinjal Chutney/Egg plant chutney
- My mother always has this trick of adding a little idli batter or dosa batter into the chutney at the end. I believe they add a nice thick consistency and a glamorous color to the chutney. Also, if you run out of tomatoes and you need sourer chutney then you can add a half-a-ladle of nice sour idli batter or dosa batter and enjoy the chutney. This trick works only for few variety of chutney. So here I take a half-a-ladle of batter and mix into the chutney. This step is optional and you can skip.
- I add a handful of nice ripen tomatoes while tempering and make them mushy. This gives a slight tangy taste to the chutney.
Now mix the hot brinjal chutney with hot-o-hot idli or Dosa and enjoy!
My friend Jays and I used to stay together. Once I made this kathirikai chutney and she liked it and told this is the first time she tasting it. That day her aunt came to our house and tasted it too. She too liked it and said she too is tasting this kathrikai chutney for the first time. My brother-in-law’s wife liked the idea of kathirikai chutney when I was talking to her over phone few days back. Then she said she tried the recipe of eggplant chutney and her two kids liked it too! My father likes this and so does Jeevs. Hope you too try this brinjal chutney and post me your comments. BTW, when my friends and I were to Jay’s home in her beautiful and clean village, her mom made this chutney called Maavu chutney (Chutney with idli batter). So this will be the recipe next in our blog 🙂
Mangala from cooking.jingalala.org