Anarosher Chaatni

March 14, 2008 | 27 Comments

Pineapple Chutney, Bengali-style

A few months ago, nestled amidst other goodies, we got a packet of panch phoron (Bengali five spice mix) from dear Sandeepa. We’ve been using it in a variety of dishes – mainly lentils. This time, we used it to make a hot-tangy-sweet pineapple chutney.

Panch Phoron typically contains equal parts of

Fenugreek seeds (methi)
Nigella seeds (kalonji)
Mustard seeds (rai or shorshe)
Fennel seed (saunf or mouri)
Cumin seed (jira)

The mustard seeds may be brown or yellow (ours were yellow).

Some variations may substitute anise for the fennel seeds or wild mustard for cumin, radhuni seed for mustard, and possibly black cumin for nigella.

The spices are popped in hot oil or ghee (clarified butter) to release the flavour. This flavoured oil (usually pungent mustard oil) is used to season vegetable or fish dishes (Panch phoron is very rarely used in meat preparations).

Read Barbara’s beautiful ode to panch phoron @ Tigers and Strawberries.

Anarosher Chaatni is a regular feature in Bengali feasts. It’s one of the dishes Ashima prepares for Ashoke in The Namesake.

While we found various versions online, we opted for this one from A Bengali Girl in the US. What made it different was the addition of ‘bhaja masala‘ – an aromatic spice mix much like garam masala. We made a few changes – we added a touch of ginger, replaced the vinegar with lime juice, and adjusted the quantities to suit our taste.

We used fresh pineapple. Frozen works too. If using canned pineapple, used crushed pineapple in its own juice. Drain the juice, keep it aside, and use it instead of the water in the recipe. Adjust the sugar and lime juice based on the sweetness of the pineapple.

It was fantastic even before adding the bhaja masala. It had a fruity taste accentuated by the pungent mustard oil and panch phoron. The addition of the masala provides a smoky, spicy dimension. Leave it out if you’re not crazy about garam masala.

Try to use mustard oil. It’s what makes this dish.

This is a great variation to the south Indian pineapple pachadi, and more figure-friendly, since it has no coconut. We adore savoury fruit dishes, and this was truly lip-smacking.

ANAROSHER CHAATNI (Pineapple Chutney, Bengali-style)

1.5 tbsp mustard oil

1 tsp panch phoron
2 dried red chillies

When the mustard seeds begin to pop, add
4 cups pineapple cut into small chunks
1 tsp grated ginger

Cook for 5 minutes, then add
3 tablespoons lime juice
**adjust according to the sweetness of the pineapple
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup sugar (or more)
salt to taste

Meanwhile, prepare the bhaja masala (Bengali spice mix)

Dry roast until aromatic
1/3 tsp cumin seeds
1/3 tsp fennel seeds

1 tsp mixed cinnamon, cardamon, mace and cloves
1/3 tsp peppercorns
1 dried red chilli
A finger-nail size piece of cassia leaf (tejpatta

Roast for a few more minutes. Grind into a fine powder.

Stir into the pineapple mix. Chill and serve.

Tastes better the next day.

We had ours on bruschetta.

Anarosher Chaatni is our entry for Sandeepa‘s Regional Cuisine of India – Bengal event.

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  1. Lakshmi says:

    Yummy… wanted to make tomato chutney bengali style, now am pulled in this direction…

  2. aa says:

    that picture with the all yellow hues is delightful. Pineapples to me are the sunflowers among fruit…truy cheerful…did that make any sense..LOL :D
    Thanks for the recipe.

    pineapples are truly delightful when someone else has cut and cleaned them :D – b.

  3. Suganya says:

    I make pineapple pickle. I would like to try this chutney too. What else Bhaja masala can be used in?

    bhaja means ‘fry’, so for any fries or stir-fries. it tastes so much like kashmiri garam masala, that you can use garam masala. – b.

  4. Cham says:

    Sweet and spice paired together , should taste great :)

  5. dhivya says:

    wow!nice entry,,,i too posted rasgulla for RCI..urs :drool:

  6. musical says:

    Sweet and sour, this chaatni is always a delight. Great choice for RCI, Bee and Jai.

  7. indosungod says:

    love the color, sunshine when we need it most :) Would love to have a taste of that sweet sour hot chatni.

  8. Madhu says:

    Looks delicious…

  9. Suganya says:

    Thanks for the tip. But I have never tasted Kashmiri garam masala :D

    we have a recipe on our site. basically it’s milder without all those coriander and cumin flavours. – b.

  10. Anita says:

    Recipe-wise visiting jugalbandi has been a tortuous experience this past week in our household. The uthappam was fine (we do a similar one quite often) but then came the poli, we had not finished admiring and drooling over it when the chocolate death happened. And we did not have time to cook any of these during the week! So we have guests coming over this weekend and guess what the dessert items are? So what if the poli and the cupcakes do not gel with the rest of the menu?
    But we are one up on you when it comes to this pineapple recipe. We just finished cooking a similar chutney called khatta from neighboring Orissa that involves dates and tomatoes. Roasted and powdered cumin and dry red chillies added at the end really transform this khatta.
    Now we are off to admire the polis some more.

  11. Jayashree says:

    A pretty name and a pretty looking dish…..

  12. Pelicano says:

    Ooooh! Yellow! And I have a lonely pineapple sitting here that would be quite happy chopped up into this dish; your blog has really made my week! :bow: Therefore, I wish you both a great weekend- :dance:

  13. Happy Cook says:

    Delicious looking chutney. Few times i scrolled back to see the drooling pic.
    Never knew there was somethinglike kashmiri garam masala, will check you recipie index for the recipe. Good suganya asked about it, now i too know about it

  14. Vani says:

    That chutney looks delicious! I’ve never tried panchphoran before but that combination of tadka must be killer!

  15. Latha says:

    OH looks delicious guys! I love the way the yellow chutnye compliments the yellow bowl.. beautiful!
    How did u figure that Ashima makes this for Ashoke?? I must go see the movie again.. don’t u love that movie? I just love the way Tabu looks so Bengali in that..her sarees etc. Loved the movie too.. kinda threw some light on our life here now and how it could be in future..which was scary!
    I;m sure this must have tasted divine on Brushchetta!

  16. Pooja V says:

    Looks like its raining chutneys in blogosphere. I hv posted chutney too this week.

  17. saswati says:

    hi!!the chutney looks awesome and as usual i don’t have any words for the photography…wonderful!

  18. aa says:

    I so agree with the cutting and cleaning bit :) — back in India, we’d have the sabzi/fruit wala roll his thela (cart)into our apartment complex, bring us the freshest pineapples, peel them and do this amazing routine with a super-thin, super-sharp blade where he would basically carve diagonal ‘V’ shaped grooves into the side of the pineapple taking all the ‘eyes’ out. The speed and dexterity of his skill would make my eyes pop out too :laugh:
    The end result were these really pretty fruit with a spiral/diagonal pattern of grooves running around them.

    Picture worth all my words:

    that’s neat. thanks for the link to a wonderful pic! -j

  19. sandeepa says:

    Aiyyyyyooooo, so so lovely Maaaaa. Looks delightful, you know I changed the rules right ;-) , entries need to be supported with the product sent to host.

    My Ma always adds the bhaja masala, I take the easy way out, and let go off it. But I love it even without the bhaja masala

  20. Laavanya says:

    That looks delicious… am a big fan of pineapple :)

  21. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for visiting. This does work much better with fresh pineapple, canned does not usually have the same tang.

  22. Fresh pineapple in this dish is a perfect example of why Indian vegetarian cuisine is so wonderful. I just bought a bunch of new spices at my Indian/Pakistani market the other day. I wonder if one of them are the Nigella seeds? Will be checking my bag of goodies now! :dance:

  23. Shibani says:

    hi bee, very nice recipe. Infact we also make the same in my home state ORISSA.
    It is a realishing dish .Thanks for sharing with us.

    Very nice picture of Panch Potona.!!!!!!!!!

  24. rina says:

    Love it….perfect for me.

  25. Miri says:

    Lovely chutney – I have been devouring tomato chutney prepared by me daughter’s best friend’s Mom by the jarful – they used plam jaggery in it since its in season and its just too too much ;)

  26. shab says:

    Nice recipe but can we substitute pineapple with ripe mango as I am having mangoes in hand,want to give it a try.

    sure, you can.

  27. priyanka says:

    wow…this ones really interesting. i can just imagine the taste of pineapple blending in with all those spices.

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