The festive, celebratory mood in my house is still on. Delicacies being churned out in my favourite haunt is being gobbled up by the chipmunks before they can be clicked for my blog. Durga Puja will culminate in a day but celebrations will continue till the Festival of Lights, Diwali ...stretched till the magical, joyful Christmas and finally coming to an abrupt halt after the New Year leaving us a little sad and forlorn .
Last few days there has been an honest and deliberate attempt from my side to make a traditional lunch at home.Food is a great way to keep ourselves closer to our roots, traditions and our culture. What we eat, how we prepare it,how we serve it and how we eat it is all related to our cultural inheritance.
And this sweet chutney made from tomatoes ,jaggery and dates is one of the delicious,authentic and simple dishes of Odisha mostly served with rice and accompaniments or with a khichadi and its a hit with puri and curry too.It's common in every household and is served in every marriage,festival or a function, a ubiquitous accompaniment.A sweet as well as tangy chutney is a hit in our household
too.This is one of the dishes whose memory, taste and smell evokes lovely pangs of nostalgia This chutney can be bottled and refrigerated for 7-8 days.
The quintessential Pancha phutana or the five spice mix is used in this Khatta.Its a mix of equal amount of cumin seeds, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds,fennel seeds and onion seeds .This spice mix is an important ingredient in an Odiya Kitchen.
5-6 medium Tomatoes,chopped
3-4 tbsp grated Jaggery
1 tsp pancha phutana
1 tsp grated Ginger
2 dry red chillies
1 tsp roasted cumin and chilli powder(Bhajaa jeera Lanka powder)
1 tbsp Mustard oil
Salt to taste or 1/2 tsp
5-6 de seeded dates
- Heat the mustard oil to smoking point in a wok and lessen the heat.
- Add panchaphutana and red chillies and when it splutters add the tomatoes and ginger...cover and cook till the tomatoes are slushy and nearly cooked.At this point 1/2 C hot water can be added.
- Add the salt and jaggery and the dates ,raisins and cook till the jaggery melts and the chutney attains a nice red colour.Sugar can be used instead of jaggery but jaggery gives a nice colour to the chutney.
- Lastly add the Jeera Lanka powder and switch off after one boil.
- Serve with Rice, Puris or Parathas.