If you have stayed in Bangalore for more than a year now, and if you haven’t even heard about Brahmins Coffee Bar, it would be a sacrilege. Brahmins Coffee Bar is one of the iconic eateries of Bangalore, in the league of Vidhyarthi Bhavan and Mavalli Tiffin Rooms (MTR), that has been serving Bangalore Tiffin Food for quite a while now. By the word Tiffin, I mean light, healthy and quick to serve and eat snacks that are usually devoured by people for breakfast or between the meals / 4 pm snacks. There are many such wonderful places apart from the two that I have mentioned above and I would probably need another blog post to do them adequate justice.
Anyway, talking more about the Brahmins Coffee Bar, the thing about this place is that it has only 5 items on the menu, yes you read it right, only 5 items. They are: Idli, Vada, Khara Bath, Kesari Bath and Filter Coffee. Also, They serve everything with only their special Coconut chutney. No Sambhar is served. But the chutney more than makes up for the lack of Sambhar. It is light green in colour, smooth in texture and of pouring consistency. Take my word for it: ditch the spoon and dig into the plate of steaming idli and piping hot Vada with your finger. Break a piece, dunk, gulp and repeat.
Therefore, it is only fair that I should share my attempt at replicating the chutney with you. This chutney will go well with Plain Idlis which are described here, with Medu Vadai detailed here or even with the Healthy Ragi Idlis , detailed here and Cucumber Chana Daal Idlis, detailed here.
- 1/2 of a cup of fresh coconut, broken into pieces
- 3 tbsp of fried Bengal Gram ( દાળિયા in Gujarati, भुनी चना दाल in Hindi)
- 1 green chilli,
- 1/4th-inch piece of ginger,
- a small handful of coriander leaves, washed and cleaned
- a sprig of curry leaves,
- 1 tsp of salt, or as per taste,
- 2 tbsp of oil,
- 1 tsp of mustard seeds,
- a pinch of asafoetida, (optional)
- Water, as needed
- Grind the fried Bengal Gram into a powder and remove it to a bowl.
- In the same mixer/blender jar, add the coconut, green chilli, ginger, coriander leaves, curry leaves and salt. Add a couple of tbsp of water to begin with and grind to smooth paste. Do this in a couple of steps adding a tbsp of water or two every time.
- The above step will need a bit of patience and do not be tempted to add all the water in one go. Once you get a smooth paste add it to the bowl containing the powdered Bengal Gram and mix well.
- Now add more water so as to achieve a pouring consistency. If you leave the chutney very thick, the idlis won’t absorb the chutney very well.
- Finally, heat the oil in a small tempering pan. Once it is hot. add the mustard seeds. Once they crackle, add the asafoetida if using and turn the heat off. Pour this over the chutney.
- To serve, ladle some chutney into a small plate. Place the Idlis/Medu Vadai on top and serve.