Mamta's Kitchen

Tamarind Chutney with Ginger and Mustard Seed 'Tarka'

Imli Chatni with Ginger and Tarka

Mamta Gupta


This is a sweet and sour South Indian chutney and it is eaten with Idli, Dosa, Vada and numerous other savoury snack. It is also great with cheese and crackers.

The word ‘chutney’ comes from original Hindi word ‘chatni’ which is a tangy and spicy paste, that makes you smack you lips, makes your tongue and mouth come alive! The word ‘chat’ or ‘chaat’ means ‘lick’ and ‘chatna’ means ‘to lick, something like smacking your lips.


  • 1/2 cup tamarind purée* or pulp. You can make pulp by soaking 1/4th of a tamarind block (bought from Indian shops) in hot water, for a couple of hours. Strain to remove stones and fibre.

  • 2 tsp. oil

  • 1/2 cup ginger, peeled and finely chopped

  • 1 tsp. chilli powder, adjust to taste

  • 2 tbsp. Jaggery or brown sugar, adjust to taste

  • Salt to taste, 1 1/2 tsp. Use kala namak or black salt, if you have any.

  • 10 curry leaves

  • 1/2 tsp. mustard seeds or rai

  • 1/2 tsp. urad/urid/urd dal (skinless black gram dal)

  • 1/2 tsp. chana dal, (skinless split black gram dal)

  • A good pinch of asafoetida powder


  1. Heat 1/2 of the oil in a pan and fry ginger on medium heat, until lightly browned

  2. Add chilli powder, fry for 10 seconds and turn heat off. Allow to cool.

  3. Place tamarind, ginger, Jaggery/brown sugar and salt in a blender and grind to a fine paste.

  4. Taste and adjust salt, chillies and sugar according to taste.

  5. In a ladle or small pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp. of oil, add mustard seeds. When the seeds splutter add asafoetida powder, urad dal, chana dal & curry leaves. Keep stirring with a spoon. When urad & channa dal turns light brown, pour over the chutney and mix.

  6. Serve as required.


If you have any comments or questions about this recipe, please post them to our Discussion Board. To link to this recipe on the forum, you may use the shortcode [recipe:12872]

Content copyright ©2001-2024 Mamta Gupta and F² Limited. (All rights reserved. No copying without permission.)
Layout and design ©2001-2024 F² Limited. (All rights reserved. No copying without permission.)
Hosted on Mythic Beasts
All comments and queries to