This sweet tomato chutney, knows as Khejur chutney is a staple in Bengali cuisine. It is sweet, tangy and ever-so-slightly spiced which makes it equally moorish as it is versatile.
Typically served right after the main course and just before dessert in Bengali households or restaurants, this chutney helps to tie courses together. No Thali meal is complete without some kind of tangy-sweet chutney either, so it’s really worthing having this kind of chutney in the fridge if you like to balance your South Asian meals. As well as curries and spiced dishes, this chutney goes really well with grilled meats and would not go amiss with a few slices of sharp cheddar in a sandwich or toastie.
What places this tomato chutney as Bangladeshi is the use of Panch Phoron – a 5-spice blend that is used across so much of Bengali cuisine. Don’t be out off if you can’t find it in your Asian supermarket, it’s easy enough to put together with a few spices that you’ll be able to find relatively easy. Follow my recipe!
I use tinned tomatoes in this recipe as it is a chutney that I like to make and eat all year round and I’m not a fan of using out-of-season, tasteless tomatoes in winter. It’s also easier and quicker to empty a tin of tomatoes than chop close to a kilo of fresh ones! If you’re making this in summer however and you have a good glut of ripe, fragrant tomatoes to use then feel free to replace tinned tomatoes with fresh – it’ll be delicious!
Tamarind adds a tang which is is characteristic of this the of chutney. If you can’t get hold of tamarind then simple add a squeeze of lime instead. The amount of chilli you use if up to you also, I like using dried chillies as they have a depth of heat but you could use chilli powder instead – add to your own heat tolerance.