Bombay Chutney/Besan Chutney/Kadalamaavu Chutney

45 mins
Serves 6 people
Author: Rajni Ram
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Bombay chutney/ kadalama chutney/ Besan chutney. This dish holds a lot of significance for me.

Will you believe me if I said I have never cooked this in 22 years? It’s TRUE. In my mind I have known how to make it, but had never practically done it. I have had a mental block about this dish/ chutney because I have tasted this always during  family functions when a Samayal Mami (  cook ) is called to help. And they usually make it so unpalatable, watery and tasteless that I never ate it.  And they always make this with Roti or Dosa because it gets done in few minutes. So until a few days back I had this view. Now let me tell you, most South Indians have a dislike for Besan( oh except when they make Mysorepak). Meaning we use it in our sweets and savories and Bajjis but not in regular cooking. If a main course  item like Gatte is Subji is made our folks will say “Kadalamava?”( meaning “oh Besan). But since I was brought up in a Cosmopolitan environment I never had the aversion towards Besan. In fact I know its rich in proteins and fiber.

Funny fact, inspiration to break the jinx of not making this dish until now is a movie scene that my hubby and I were watching and the hero makes this chutney in such mouthwatering way that I ended up letting go of my mental block.

My daughter, thanks to my mental block, had never tasted this dish ever. She loved it????, and said it tastes like south Indian potato masala that we make for Puris and rightly so because we do add little diluted Besan flour there. People who make this regular will know I have made it as a thicker version of the chutney with lots of ginger, green chillies, curry leaves, onions, and peas. That’s my #breakfree story.

Coming to why Besan chutney is called Bombay chutney in the south, well I could not find a satisfactory answer to this. But may be because Maharashtra has its own version of this chutney called “Pitla”, though the consistency of Pitla is more on the runny side and the spices used a little different, so I think from Maharashtra this dish trickled down south and got a makeover with different spices and Bombay chutney came to being. Gujarat also has its version of this chutney, which is a slightly sweet version called “Kadi Chutney”, and so does the Andhra region, cal “Senaga Pindi Pachadi”.

Let’s make this simple chutney, and while you are here check out other recipes like – Chakki Ki Shak, Vegetable Oats Kichdi, Methi Wale Baingan, Roasted Bell Peppers chutney, Ragi and Besan Chila , and many more…

Ingredients

Ingredients

  1. Besan 1 cup
  2. Water 3 cups approx  added in parts
  3. Salt as required
  4. Turmeric powder 1 tsp divided
  5. Red chilli powder 1 tsp
  6. Mustard seeds 1 tsp
  7. Chana dal 1 tsp
  8. Urad dal 1tsp
  9. Onion 1 large finely chopped
  10. Ginger 1 inch piece finely chopped
  11. Green chillies 2 finely chopped
  12. Curry leaves a few
  13. Asafoetida 1/2 tsp
  14. Green peas ( optional) if using per cook.
  15. Oil for tempering
  1. In a bowl take besan, add 1 cup water to it and form a lump free paste. To this add, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and set aside.
  2. Now take oil in a kadai or pan and heat. First add the mustard seeds, Chana dal and urad dal. When the mustard seeds splutter add 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, followed by chopped onions, green chilli, ginger and curry leaves. Fry these nicely until the onions start browning a bit. Add the green peas if using now.
  3. Now give the Besan paste in the bowl a mix and slowly pour it into the kadai with tempering. This should be done while stirring continuously. Pour one more cup water and stir constantly so that no lumps are formed. Stir over low fire, this will ensure the besan cooks well and does not have a raw taste.
  4. Now check for salt and spices and adjust if required. If the besan still has a raw taste, pour another half cup water and stir until the raw taste is gone. You can customise the consistency as per your requirement. Squeeze a lemon if you like( this is totally optional). Enjoy the chutney while hot with Idli, Dosa, Rotis, Puri and more.

In a bowl take besan, add 1 cup water to it and form a lump free paste. To this add, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and set aside. Now take oil in a kadai or pan and heat. First add the mustard seeds, Chana dal and urad dal. When the mustard seeds splutter add 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, followed by chopped onions, green chilli, ginger and curry leaves. Fry these nicely until the onions start browning a bit. Add the green peas if using now.  Now give the Besan paste in the bowl a mix and slowly pour it into the kadai with tempering. This should be done while stirring continuously. Pour one more cup water and stir constantly so that no lumps are formed. Stir over low fire, this will ensure the besan cooks well and does not have a raw taste. Now check for salt and spices and adjust if required. If the besan still has a raw taste, pour another half cup water and stir until the raw taste is gone. You can customise the consistency as per your requirement. Squeeze a lemon if you like( this is totally optional). Enjoy the chutney while hot with Idli, Dosa, Rotis, Puri and more.

Notes:

  1. This tastes best when the Besan is fully cooked. When nicely cooked the besan becomes duller in appearance.
  2. Veggies like capsicum and carrot can also be added to the recipe along with peas.
  3. I have kept the consistency thick, it was be diluted by adding 1/4 cup warm water if you prefer.
  4. Cooking the besan paste on low flame ensures perfection of taste and flavour.

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you. If you have a query about the recipe email us and ill respond as soon as I can.

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