MAKES: 11/2 cups
TIME: 15 minutes
This recipe plays up the wonderful affinity of cilantro and mint for one another. Made with either herb alone, the chutney will still be worthwhile, but with both it’s almost magical, as it would be with Thai or regular basil substituted for the mint.
Depending on your tolerance for heat, you may adjust the number of chiles in the recipe; but remember that raw garlic and ginger pack a punch too.
11/2 cups firmly packed chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup firmly packed fresh mint leaves
1 to 2 Thai or other hot fresh green chiles, or to taste, or hot red pepper flakes to taste
2 inches ginger, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2 large or 1 small-to-medium red onion, quartered
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
Combine the herbs, chiles, ginger, onion, and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely ground.
Add the lime juice and salt and process until nearly smooth (you may need to add up to 1/4 cup water to help the food processor get going); taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve at room temperature or cover and refrigerate for up to a day.
Creamy Cilantro-Mint Chutney. This cools the whole thing down a bit and makes it closer to a Raita: Add 1/2 cup or more good-quality yogurt, then taste, adjust the seasoning, and serve.
Long-Lasting Cilantro-Mint Chutney. Increase the garlic to 5 cloves and use 1/2 cup white wine vinegar instead of the lime juice. Covered and refrigerated, this will last up to several weeks.