Pudhina Thovayal (Thick Chutney)

Thovayal is a thick chutney, served mainly for breakfast and dinner in Chettinad. Certain varieties of Thovayal are also served at lunch. The ingredients are often sauted in oil or ghee and then ground in a stone Ammi Kal. Very little water would be used to grind, and we would reconstruct it with water if we wanted a thinner version, after it was served. Nowadays, Mixers have come in, and it is quite difficult to get the same effect.

Pudhina - Spearmint is a common herb that we use in various permutations and combinations in our day to day cooking?. It has a unique flavour and its health benefits are manifold. Pudina chutney is an easy and tasty way to include this herb in our diet. Serve with Idli / Dosa / Uthappam.
In this recipe, if you add green chillies, the colour differs. I like it with red chillies.

Oil - 2 tsp
Dry Red Chillies - 5 to 6 (Long Variety)
Mustard - 1/4 tsp
Split Urad - 1/2 tsp
Channa Dal - 1 Tbsp
Onion - 1, chopped
Tomato - 1, chopped
Pudina - 1 bunch
Rock Salt - 3/4 tsp (approx)
Tamarind - 1/2 tsp
Coconut - 1/2 cup

Heat oil in a kadai and fry the chillies. Remove and keep aside.
In the same oil, fry mustard, urad and channa dal.
Add onions and saute until transparent. Add tomatoes and pudina. Saute well.
Then, add salt, tamarind and saute for 1 minute. Add coconut, mix well and take off heat.
Cool and grind using just enough water.

To Serve:
Take HOT Idli's in a plate, spoon 1 tsp ghee or gingelly oil over it. Serve Pudina Thovayal beside it.

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