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Creamy cashew chutney (Kaju chutney)

Cashew nuts grow abundantly in Kerala, they are large and have a lovely flavour. My parents used to live in Cochin and every time they visited me, a large bag of roasted cashew nuts was always welcome. Originally cashew nuts originated in Brazil but today are grown all over Asia and Africa.

The world of Indian chutneys is diverse and large. Modern chefs are bringing back exquisite chutneys from nuts and here is a lovely example of one such chutney. The chutney is creamy and luxurious and your guests will feel pampered. It is nutty with hints of chilli and spice from the ginger. This is the chutney that will steal the show at the table. Although this chutney can be used as a traditional side for any meal, it is also wonderful as a cruditè dip or spread on sandwiches.

Yamuna Devi's cookbook is probably the first cookbook I bought when I moved to the US 30 years ago for my Ph.D. Over the years, I have cooked almost half the recipes, it is the cookbook that taught me technique, and flavour profiles and always gave me a wonderful meal. This vegetarian cookbook is essential on any shelf, it is the bible of Indian vegetarian cuisine.

For more recipes from this amazing cookbook, click here.


1 cup cashew nuts

3-4 green chillies, or to taste

1 teaspoon ginger paste

Juice of 1/2-1 lime

Salt, to taste

3-5 tablespoons water

Cilantro, to garnish

Dry roast the cashew nuts on a frying pan till lightly golden and aromatic. Set aside to cool.

In a small blender add 1/2 the cashew nuts and all the other ingredients including 3 tablespoons of water. Add more water for a thick chutney. Blitz to a smooth paste. Taste for salt and spice and adjust as needed. Add the remaining cashew nuts, keeping 2 for garnish, and pulse a couple of times to get a rough nutty chutney.

Scrape into a bowl and garnish with the remaining cashew nuts and cilantro.

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