Most Sundays during the winter, I wake to darkness and cold here in Halifax and all I can think of is what shall we eat today? Not a Sunday goes by in my house where one of my three favorite sauces does not come out to play.
First, there is the Tamarind chutney; sour and sweet with just a hint of heat. My love affair with tamarind started a few years back when I lived in the British Virgin Islands, and I would shake the tamarind tree in hopes of delicious pods falling to the ground. The only problem is that I am the type of person who always over does things, and inevitably I would end up eating way too many pods and spending way too much time on the “throne”. Of course this didn’t damper my love affair with tamarind, as the next day I would set out to shake that tree some more and deal with the nasty consequences yet again! These days, my tamarind chutney gets put into a number of Lavallée favorites; curry, stews and sauces. I also enjoy it as a simple dipping sauce for samosas or bhaji.
Next on my list is the fiery Green Chili Chutney. This little bottle packs a huge punch, so use with caution! This chutney is nothing but pureed green chilies with vinegar, some spices and salt. For all the lovers of heat, this one is for you. I have been known to spoon some into my finished soups when in need of a serious ass whooping, or wanting the baby living in my belly for nine months to finally make it’s way out. I thank the Green Chili Chutney for my fast and speedy delivery with Zoe.
Last, but of course not least, is the mother of the chutney group, Coriander Chutney. The freshness that is found in this bottle is out of this world. Put a dollop on some scrambled eggs or on a bowl of chili, and you will be a happy camper. You can even mix it with the tamarind or green chili to make a nice dipping sauce for poppadoms or just about anything else.
When I am feeling feisty, all three of these sauces make their way into my dinner, and boy does it ever make a difference. Try experimenting with one or all three of these sauces and make up a few recipes to call your own. Here in Halifax, you can find the Shah’s chutneys at “220 Volts” (that is what we call the Indian grocer on Robie Street), but in any large city you can find them at any Indian store.