I am an Indian without a mango chutney recipe. And like a Mexican who can?t make tamales, an Aussie who hates to drink, or George Bush in the White House, it just feels wrong. While I was on the hunt for the perfect mango chutney recipe, I started to realize that I am a recipe hacker. Over the past year or so, any time I try to make a new dish, I tend to gather several recipes from varying sources (cookbooks, blogs, food magazine websites, etc.), read them all thoroughly, and pick out the ingredients or methods I think would benefit the dish the most (relying on my cunning knowledge of culinary school skills, of course) to create a cut-and-paste version of my own recipe. Does anyone else do that? I know that traditionally, I should pick one recipe, make it once the correct way, and then either pitch it or add on to it to make it my own. I also know that traditionally, I hate rules. So screw tradition.
For this recipe, I used this recipe and this recipe from Epicurious.com, and a recipe from the Barnes and Noble book, Greatest Ever Indian. All the recipes I read had similar methods that involved cooking the ingredients on the stove until they reduced into almost a jam, so I knew that would be my main plan of attack.
From the first recipe, I liked the addition of apples and curry powder (I had just freshly ground my own curry powder for the curry I needed the chutney for), so I made sure to add those to my recipe. From the second recipe, I took the addition of apple cider vinegar instead of plain because I love the stuff and happened to have a bottle of local cider vinegar on hand. From the cookbook recipe, I took the chopped dates, which I hoped would impart their buttery caramel taste I loved so much.
And guess what? It kicked major ass. It was sweet, but not overly so, with a complex slightly savory background from the curry that perfectly complimented the fruit. The fresh ginger I added really gave a nice hit that I can only describe as citrusy, if that makes sense. And the apples gave a little texture so it wasn?t all mango, all the time. I was quite proud of myself, actually. So here it is: an official Leena recipe. You’ll notice I don’t post actual Leena recipes here that often. I absolutely loathe meticulous tasks like writing down what I actually put into my own recipes and testing them, because I am usually all over the place, even when I follow a recipe. Plus, I’m lazy. I figure if you really want a recipe from me, you can haul your ass over here and write your own damn recipe down. But just because I like you….here is my mango chutney recipe. It goes great with curry, but we’ve also used it on chicken sandwiches and lamb pie. If you try it, let me know what you think–a recipe is always a work in progress with me. But I did manage to eat two cups of it in a day…with just a spoon…I’m just saying.
~LTG Leena?s Mango Chutney A blend of these recipes: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/230708, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/238565 and the recipe from Greatest Ever Indian Cookbook.
1 large ripe but firm mango, peeled, pitted, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 1 cup)
1-2 medium apples (Granny Smith), peeled, cored and diced
1/4 cup golden raisins
1/2 finely chopped onion
1/8 cup dates, pitted and chopped
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/8 cup of peeled, finely chopped ginger root
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp of each: ground nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt
Put the dates, mangoes, apples, ginger root, onion, vinegar, raisins, and sugar into a large stainless steel saucepan. Bring to boil uncovered over high heat, reduce heat and lightly simmer, stirring occasionally until fruit is tender and sauce is thickened, approx. 20 minutes. Add nutmeg, lemon juice, salt, curry powder, and cinnamon; simmer for 5 minutes. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until you use it. Serve it hot or cold., or store in the fridge up to two weeks.