The more one talks about the chutneys of West Bengal, the less it seems. Chutneys and desserts play a very important role at the end of a Bengali meal. Yes, the Bengalis love their chutnies. So do people from the rest of India. Each Indian state has its own chutney to boast about. However, one major difference between the chutneys of West Bengal and the rest of India is the addition of sugar or jaggery to the chutney.
Bengalis love their chutneys sweet. Be it mango, wood apple, or what have you, all their chutneys are sweet and tangy. One such sweet and tangy chutney is the mixed dry fruit chutney. It is sweet. It is tangy. It is nutty. And it gives a kick to your taste buds. It is a super-delicious mix of dry fruits and aromatic spices combined into a fabulous whole.
Interestingly, Bengalis love saying it as Chaatni, which I would interpret as something that you lick, a sort of onomatopoeia, I guess.
The good part about the dry fruits is that they are “loaded with essential oils, proteins, potassium, and calcium that help to increase one’s immunity. Also, the presence of antioxidants in them can help one fight against various infections and illnesses.”
This chutney can be enjoyed throughout the year, no matter the season or reason.
My mom would always have a bowl full of chutney of different sorts: sweet, sour, and salty. It would be a fresh bowl every day. She would use any of the seasonal fruits to make the most delicious chutneys. I have kept up the tradition and make chutney quite often with whatever fruits I can lay my hands on.
It is super quick and easy to make. It is a very simple recipe packed with goodness in taste and health. It can be prepared in various ways with similar or different ingredients.
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Recipe Type: Chutney
- Figs, 300 gms, chopped
- Apricots, 300 gms, chopped
- Prunes, 300 gms, whole
- Alu bukhara, 150 gms, whole
- Sugar: 300 gms
- A pinch of salt
For the masala:
- 2 dry red chillies
- 3 tsp whole dhaniya
- 3tsp jeera
- 3 tsp saunf
Dry roast the above ingredients for the masala together till they release their aroma. Let the roasted ingredients cool, then blend them into a coarse powder. Set it aside.
In a microwave-able dish, put all the dry fruits, add just enough water to cover them, and microwave for about 10 minutes, or till they turn soft. Then add the sugar and a pinch of salt and microwave for another 5 minutes till the whole mix becomes amalgamated. Let it cool. Then add the coarsely ground roasted masala. The dry fruit chutney is ready. It can be stored in an airtight jar in a refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. Enjoy it per se or with parathay, sandwiches, curd rice, cheese, etc. ad libitum.
So do try this fruity chutney; I am sure you will be in for a treat. Spread the love and the warmth.