Thursday 28 March 2024

Bombay Chutney (பாம்பே சட்னி)

My grandmother used to make Bombay chutney as an accompaniment to poori or chapati. I am not sure why it is called Bombay chutney! Those days, in a traditional household, poori and chapati were rare delicacies, probably learnt from those women who had settled down in North India, as girls were often married off to well-employed, eligible boys in Bombay. Therefore, it is possible that Bombay chutney was adapted from the Maharashtrian dish "Pitla" made from gram flour. Nonetheless, if you do not have any vegetable in stock, you can confidently rely on Bombay chutney to save the day!


Bengal gram flour or besan - 2 tablespoons

Oil - 2 teaspoons

Split urad dhal - 1 teaspoon

Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon

Green chili - 1 no, chopped

Ginger - ½ inch piece, grated

Asafoetida - a generous pinch

Salt - to taste

Curry leaves - a few

Coriander leaves - chopped, 1 tablespoon

Lemon juice - 1 tablespoon (optional)

  • Dissolve Bengal gram flour in 2 cups of water without forming lumps. Add in salt and asafoetida. Mix well and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a kadai, add mustard seeds and when they start to sputter, add in urad dhal. Sauté till the dhal turns golden brown in color. Add green chilies and ginger; sauté for 30 seconds.
  • Reduce the flame and add in the besan mixture slowly while stirring continuously. Cook till the mixture thickens. Switch off the fire.
  • Add lemon juice and mix well. Garnish with curry leaves and coriander leaves. Serve hot with poori or chapati.
Note: If desired, you may add chopped onions to the seasoning in the kadai and fry till it becomes light brown in color, and then add gram flour mixture.

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