Basic Chettinad Paste

Basic Chettinad Paste

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Chettiars, the natives of Chettinad, are a very successful trading community, and history speaks of the key role they played in trading Indian spices with other countries like Burma.

Perhaps because of their expertise in spices and the abundance of these goods in the region, Chettinad cuisine is marked by its spicy flavour and rich texture, which is evident from the ingredients that go into the preparation of the Basic Chettinad Paste, a masala that is used to make popular accompaniments like the Chettinad Curry .

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Basic Chettinad Paste recipe - How to make Basic Chettinad Paste

Soaking Time:  10 Minutes   Preparation Time:    Cooking Time:    Total Time:     Makes 0.50 cup
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  1. Combine the poppy seeds and cashewnuts in a bowl, add 3 tbsp of warm water and keep aside to soak for 10 minutes. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a deep non-stick pan and add the cumin seeds and fennel seeds.
  3. When the seeds crackle, add the coriander seeds, red chillies, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon and coconut, mix well and sauté on a medium flame for 2 minutes or till you get a pleasant aroma. Keep aside to cool.
  4. Once cooled, combine the poppy seeds-cashew mixture, roasted mixture , salt and ¼ cup of water and blend till smooth.
  5. Use as required for recipes or store in deep-freezer in an airtight container or a sealed poly bag.

Handy tip

    Handy tip
  1. You can use ¼ cup grated dry coconut (kopra) instead of fresh coconut.


  1. Use this gravy on the same day to make recipes of your choice. If you wish to store it in the deep-freezer for a few weeks, avoid adding coconut as the gravy may get spoilt on storing.
  2. Pour in food-grade zip lock bags or airtight containers and store under refrigerated conditions. While making the subzi using the stored gravy, thaw and use it as per the recipe.
  3. Towards the end, add 3 tbsp coconut milk instead of freshly grated coconut, mix well and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.

Nutrient values per cup
Energy809 cal
Protein7.9 g
Carbohydrates16.6 g
Fiber13.8 g
Fat79.1 g
Cholesterol0 mg
Vitamin A279.6 mcg
Vitamin B10.2 mg
Vitamin B20.1 mg
Vitamin B31 mg
Vitamin C1 mg
Folic Acid12.5 mcg
Calcium18 mg
Iron2.6 mg
Magnesium0 mg
Phosphorus0 mg
Sodium0 mg
Potassium0 mg
Zinc1 mg

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