Bell pepper Core & Cilantro Stems chutney

I wanted to make use of something different, for Nithu’s ‘Best from Waste’ event. And when you are given an assignment such as this, it sheds light on so many things that are thrown out as garbage. I started paying attention to everything that was going into the kitchen garbage, and even started collecting the scraps. 🙂 Thanks Nithu, for helping me look at scraps from a totally ‘edible’ perspective. 🙂

We all know that cilantro stems are edible. I almost always use them, and don’t ever throw them out. But, I do know of a lot of people who do that. But, capsicum core and membrane, everybody throws them out. I do that too..But, I noticed that the membranes of the bell peppers I got the other day, were so thick and fleshy and I wanted to use them in some way. Sometimes the bell peppers are sold per piece, ie $1 ea and sometimes by pound. And, I believe that when you buy by pound, you end up paying 20% for the parts you throw out..So, here’s a way to stretch that buck…

Ingredients:
Membranes/Insides of 3 bell peppers(any color)
Stalks from 3 bunches of cilantro
1 medium onion, chopped
4 red chillies
1 tsp of tamarind paste
1 tsp split urad dal
1 tsp channa dal
1/2 tsp oil
salt to taste

For tempering:
1/2 tsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard
1 tsp split urad dal
few curry leaves

Method:
Cut the bell peppers and take the core out. Take the core to the sink, and use your fingers to loosen the seeds as much as possible. (Believe me, use the sink, or you would end up with seeds all over the kitchen. 🙂 ). From 3 bell peppers, I had about 1 cup of fleshy core, but it depends. chop and set aside. chop the cilantro stems also.

Heat oil in a pan, add the urad dal and channa dal. Let it become golden brown and add the red chillies. Add the onion and saute until limp. Add the bell pepper core and salt and saute until it becomes soft. Take off the heat and toss in the chopped cilantro stems, and let it wilt from the heat. Let cool and grind adding salt, a little bit water and the tamarind paste.

Temper by heating the oil and let the mustard seeds splutter. Add the urad dal and curry leaves and add it to the chutney.

Verdict: Very fresh and you can’t tell it had the core, but it added to the volume of the chutney. The cilantro stems added a vibrant taste and color to the chutney.

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5 Comments

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