Trust me to say that I never liked Dates before. I know all about the benefits like low cal, low GI etc. of this super food. But I never really liked the taste. The only time I had them with pleasure was in Dubai. Those dates were simply cherish worthy, with perfect moistness and sweetness. Absolute delish ! I had loads during our stay in the Movenpick hotel. Wish I had the pictures to upload and share with you guys here .. As you know I got my data card corrupted and all .. blah blah ! 🙂
Anyway, so when I got chance of tasting some dates chutney at a friend’s place I was more than happy to discover that I actually could eat a lot of dates that way. Thanks to my dear friend, and her quick recipe I prepared this chutney last weekend and loved it with whatever I ate it with. Be it Bhel-puri, Chaat, or the regular pulao, dosa etc. ; this was a proper hit. Specially on a fresh veggie Sandwich, the spread was delicious and left me craving for more.
Everything that goes inside this chutney is a treat or health and taste buds both. Tamarind, jiggery and Dates.. well nothing else really unless you want a proper tadka or something. This recipe is so simple, that I actually cursed myself for not thinking it on my own. Have a quick look below 🙂
What you need?
- 2 cups dates – seeds pitted out and soaked in warm water for half an hour
- 1 cup Jaggery – or more as per your taste
- 1 tbsp concentrated Tamarind paste – ( if you are using fresh tamarind, the procedure to extract is given under notes below)
- 1 tsp Mustard oil ( or ghee , as I prefer to use )
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- A pinch of Asafoetida
- A handful of curry leaves
- A pinch of salt
- A pinch of sugar – optional
- 1 cup water
How to make?
- Heat oil in a pressure cooker, and sizzle asafoetida. Then splutter the mustard seeds and add curry leaves to fry for a minute or so.
- Add everything else, and cook till one whistle, turn off the flame and open when the pressure eases off
- Let the mixture cool off for a bit
- When it comes to room temperature, blend everything together in a blender till it gets to a course paste.
- Transfer in a steel/ glass container… and enjoy chilled or at room temperature.
Notes and Tips:
- If you are using fresh tamarind, soak them in 1 cup water for 2-3 hours, and extract the pulp. For 1 tbsp concentrated paste used in the recipe above , you may use ½ cup of this fresh tamarind pulp. Adjust according to your taste, some like it tangy I like it more towards the sweet side.
- The chutney gets thicker when comes at room temperature, so adjust water accordingly.
- If you are looking to use it as a spread, add the water as per the recipe else use ½ cup more to give it a runny texture
- You may also replace jiggery with sugar completely, depends on your taste. If using s ugar, only add ¼ cup of it since dates are sweet on their own too
- You may like to squeeze some lemon juice on top, when serving it with chaat, Bhel-puri etc.. gives a different taste altogether