Mint or pudina and raw mangoes bring with them the whiff of the summer air up north in India. The smell of the spicy and sour pudina chutney brings back memories of those long and lazy summer holidays. The hot and dry loo winds blowing outside and the noisy air coolers blowing full blast to keep the indoor temperatures as cool as possible.
These hot summer days bring with them the tongue tingling pudina (mint) chutneys. Be it meals of snacks, pudina chutney fits in anywhere. If you are like me, you may not mind simply having the chutney all by itself.
Pudina is a very common herb in Indian kitchens and is long known for its innumerable health benefits. Pudina helps relieve indigestion, gives comfort in aches and pains, fights oral infections and cancer, brings about a glow to the skin, acts as a blood cleanser, eliminates toxins from the body, and combats bad breath. These were some of the most important and known benefits of pudina.
The other main ingredient in this mint chutney is raw mango which has its own set of benefits. Compared to its ripened form it has a richer quantity of antioxidants and vitamin C thereby improving the immunity and stamina of the body and protecting against cardiovascular diseases. Along with salt, raw mangoes aid in preventing excess body water loss in the dry summer days.
The addition of jaggery, as opposed to sugar, not only enhances its taste but also adds on to its nutrition factor. It also brings about a good consistency to the whole mix and gives a good rich colour to the chutney.
The two spices, cumin and fenugreek, are in a rather insignificant amount but their taste can be well distinguished and cannot be done away with.
Chutneys are that little addition to every meal that instantly perk up the entire menu. They not only taste great but also enhance the entire food ensemble. They are rather easy to prepare and have a finger licking taste. Let us prepare the very spicy mint chutney.