Spicy Fresh Mint Chutney, Sweet & Sour Green Mango Chutney, Sweet & Indulgent Pineapple Chutney – three fresh, rich and tasty chutneys which are made daily at 25 Degrees North, a North Indian restaurant in Tecom and where I recently had the pleasure of learning how to cook these tasty chutneys with Head Chef Abbas and his Calcutta team.
I visited 25 Degrees North for lunch a while ago with a friend and we were both really taken with the great tasting chutneys which started off our dining experience. The chutneys were so fresh and tasty my dining companion said he would buy them. When we were asking the waiting staff about the supplier, we were told that the chutneys were made in house each day by the Chef and I was lucky enough to be asked to visit the kitchen and see them being made. Some surgery and recovery and a holiday in Thailand then ensued before I returned to the kitchen of 25 Degrees North where Chef Abbas and the team had prepared for my visit and below I share with you their three signature chutneys :
Please note I haven’t given quantities, as these weren’t weighed out or measured, but you can visually see how much of everything was used and you will probably want to adjust the spices to suit your taste as you cook anyway. Enjoy
Fresh Mint, washed and roughly chopped
Fresh Corriander, washed and roughly chopped
Raw Green Mango
Fresh Ginger Root
Green Chillies (2 if you like it spicy)
Chopped Red Onion
Yogurt (Chef used Full Fat, I would use low fat)
Roast Cumin Powder
Step 1 Prepare all of the above ingredients
Step 2 Add all ingredients above (except black salt, masala and cumin power) into a food processor/blender – blend for a few minutes until everything is fully liquidised and blended together, add more yogurt if required
Step 3 Mix in the cumin, black salt and chat masala powder to taste
Step 4 Serve and enjoy
Raw Green Mango chopped into small pieces (skin removed)
2 Fresh Red Chillies
Step 1 Heat some oil in a very hot wok, add the chillies, fenugreek seed and fennel seed and stir fry for a few minutes
Step 2 Add the Mango and stir around for a few minutes, keeping the mango moving around the pan a lot
Step 3 Add some cold water and some sugar and continue to cook until the mango is cooked and the ingredients are fully mixed together
Step 4 Enjoy
Fresh pineapple, skin removed and blended to a puree
Raisins – chef used yellow ones
2 dried red chillies
Step 1 Heat oil in a wok until nice and hot, add the chilies, fenugreek seed and fennel seed, raisins and cashew nuts and cook over a high heat for a few minutes
Step 3 Add the pineapple puree and bring to a slow boil with the other ingredients
Step 3 Add some water to make a thick liquid consistency, add quite a lot of sugar (to taste) and keep cooking until all the ingredients are cooked roughly 5 minutes or so
Ste4 4 Enjoy
All of the above to be served with Poppadoms and Finely Sliced Red Onions
Mint Chutney is also served with Samosas and Kebabs as a dip
Whilst in the kitchen I asked for a cup of tea and in no time at all the team had whisked up one of my favourite drinks, a cup of lovely masala chai. No boiling of kettles here or tea bags, instead a fairly quick but clever art of brewing tea which I’ve described below.
Black Tea Leaves
Step 1 Crush the Cardamon and Ginger in a pan with a little hot water and boil vigorously for a minute or so
Step 2 Add the black tea leaves, sugar and milk and continue to boil vigorously for a few more minutes making sure it doesn’t boil over
Step 3 Strain the contents of the pan through a tea strainer into a mug or cup and serve immediately
Step 4 Enjoy
Whilst learning how to make the chutneys I chatted to Chef Abbas who at the age of 27 and three quarters (from what I can gather) is in charge of the kitchen at 25 Degrees North. Born in Calcutta he learnt to cook at home and then trained as a chef whilst cooking in a kitchen in Goa. His culinary skills brought him to Dubai in 2008 where he has worked in The Palace Hotel, The Sofitel, Melia Hotel and finally 25 Degrees North. His passion for Indian food shows through his cooking and his knowledge of using good ingredients and the great spice combination. When not eating Indian cuisine Abbas says his favourite food is French food, with a simple steak with herb butter being one of the dishes he enjoys the most. His signature dish at 25 Degrees North is butter chicken which he tells me is just the perfect blend of spices with mint chutney being his favourite chutney for it’s spiciness, the large smile on his face when were were tasting the chutney speaks volumes, this is a chef who loves his own cooking and still gets joy from getting the flavours just right.
Many thanks for my visit to Chef Abbas, Maroo, Sarip, Jahangir, Tajamul and Ajman Ali who all made my visit so interesting and fun and to Manager Nadeem who made my visit possible.
I was gifted the lovely chutneys made that day and have been eating them with a big smile on my face as I remember my cooking demonstration and fond memories of a spicy afternoon.
You can find more information about 25 Degrees North on their website Facebook or follow them on Twitter
25 Degrees North Restaurant Damac Executive Heights Tower, Tecom, Al Barsha, Dubai, UAE Tel : 04-4527779 Fax : 04-4214079