In Kolkata there is a restaurant called Kasturi that has no menu. The chef there cooks some of the best food I’ve had, and always serves this pineapple and ginger chutney to boot. It really does go with anything—I’ve eaten it with fish, meat, and dosas, and it makes a wonderful sandwich filling with Cheddar, ham, or fish.
Makes a medium jar (around 12 ounces)
1 medium ripe pineapple
2 tablespoons canola oil
3 teaspoons black mustard seeds
1½-inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
¾ teaspoon ground red chile
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1¼ level teaspoons salt
½ cup sugar
juice of 2 limes
Cut off the top and the base of your pineapple and discard, then stand the pineapple upright and cut away the skin from top to bottom. If there are “eyes” still left in the sides, gouge them out with the tip of a knife. Now cut the flesh of the pineapple away from the round fibrous core in the middle, then dice up the flesh.
Put the oil into a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add the mustard seeds, and when the seeds start to pop, add the ginger, ground red chile, black pepper, salt, and diced pineapple. Mix well and cook for around 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the sugar and lime juice and cook for a further 15 to 20 minutes, until the pineapple looks translucent and soft and all the liquid has reduced and looks a bit like jam.
Taste and adjust the salt, sugar, or lime as you wish, then transfer into a scrupulously clean jar. This chutney will keep for at least a couple of weeks in the fridge.