Thuvaiyal is a South Indian chutney, the preparation of which is very similar to a chutney. The difference between a chutney and a Thuvaiyal may be in that Thuvaiyal usually uses sauteed ingredients and chutneys are prepared with raw ingredients which are not sauteed. Thuvaiyal tastes great with rice or flatbreads. I have also used them as sandwich spreads in the past. My belated mother was a great cook. I learned to cook by watching her cook. This recipe has its roots in my mother's recipe.
1 cup of Toor dal
Two cups of mint leaves
1 cup of shredded coconut (fresh or fresh-frozen or dry)
6 Red Chilies
A dash of Asafoetida powder
1 Tbsp of Coconut oil
1/2 Tsp Tamarind paste
In a heave-bottomed pan, heat up the oil.
Add the asafoetida, Toor Dal, Red chilies.
Turn down the heat to low and add the mint leaves.
Stir frequently and remove from pan once the mint leaves start to soften/wilt.
By now, the toor dal should be roughly light brownish in color.
Let this mixture cool a bit. Blend the mixture, coconut, in a blender or food processor, coarsely. Making it into a fine paste is okay, but coarse is preferable. The coarse mixture hits a different set of high notes in your palette when you eat it and it is so much more fun! Add a pinch of salt.
Here is how my prep looked!
Mint Thuvaiyal (bottom right hand corner of the plate) - last seen hanging with 3 good looking chapatis and some Chickpeas Sambar :)