Pumpkin and Tomato chutney (Pumpkin Dip)

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Pumpkin Chutney is something that I recently learned to make as I was looking for ways to use my left over pumpkin puree! ( yes I still had some more of pumpkin puree left over from my 2 large Halloween pumpkins.  I had roasted them and frozen the puree.)  This chutney is very common in Tamil Nadu, a southern state of India. Tomatoes may or may not be added traditionally but I like it with tomatoes as it gives a nice tang to it. I saw a bunch of different recipes for this and eventually ended up making my own version. You will love this chutney – the texture is so smooth and it has a rich and slightly sweet taste to it.  This chutney goes very well with Dosas, Idlis and Adais.  This chutney is a nice and equally delicious alternative to the coconut chutney. It can also be a very nice dip to be served with small pieces of toasted bread or crostini.  For serving as a dip you can omit the mustard and curry leaves seasoning.

This recipe will make about 1 and 1/2 cup of chutney

Ingredients:

1 tsp of coconut oil (or olive oil or sesame oil)
1 tbsp urad dal (split black gram)
1 tsp of cumin seeds
1 big dry red chill
1 Cup of fresh pumpkin chopped or home-made
pumpkin puree without water
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (or about 1 small)
1 clove of garlic, chopped

1/4 tsp red chilli powder (optional if you want it spicy)
1 small piece of tamarind, about the size of a nickel or
about 1 tsp of tamarind pulp
1/2 tsp salt

Oil garnish (tadka)
1 tsp coconut oil(or olive oil or sesame oil)
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
3-4 fresh curry leaves

Method:

Take a medium size pan and add  1/2 tsp of the oil and toast the urad dal on medium heat until golden brown – about 2-3 minutes. (Take care not to burn them by constantly stirring). As soon as the urad dal starts turning golden brown, add the cumin seeds and the dry red chilli and toast for another 30 seconds.  Transfer this mixture to a food processor.

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Now in the same pan pan add a little more oil (1/2 tsp or so) and heat it. Then add the pumpkin pieces (or the puree) and saute for about a minute. Add the tomatoes and the garlic next and continue to saute on medium heat for another 2-3 minutes until the tomatoes look a little soft (They do not need to cook completely). Transfer this mixture to the food processor too.

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Add the tamarind piece (or the pulp) and the salt and grind this mixture to a smooth consistency.

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For the oil garnish (tadka), heat the 1 tsp of coconut oil in a small pan and when hot add the mustard seeds. When they splutter,turn the heat off and add the curry leaves. Pour this oil garnish over the ground chutney.

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 Notes:

You could also try substituting the urad dal with peanuts to get the same nutty flavor component.

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