peach habanero chutney

Peach-Habanero Chutney

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

The word chutney comes from the Sanskrit word chatni, and in India, refers to relishes that are used to accent other dishes. They can be sweet, sour, hot, or mild. This is a hot and sweet version.  Serve with curries or other Indian foods.

From the article “Perfectly Pungent Peaches” by Dave DeWitt here.


1 teaspoon dried crushed habanero chiles

2 pounds peaches, peeled, pitted, and diced

2 cups white vinegar

1 1/4 cup light brown sugar

1/4 cup lemon juice

1 medium onion, minced

1/2 cup raisins

2 teaspoons mustard seeds

1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice


Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the sauce is thick, stirring occasionally and skimming off any foam that forms.  Cool, place in jars, and refrigerate.  Variation: Puree the mixture for a smoother chutney.

Heat level: Medium Hot

Yelemecam Sadam

Yelemecam Sadam (Lime Rice)

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

This is a popular Southern Indian recipe that is either served as a side dish to curries or on its own with mango pickle or chutney. Note the tradition of adding a thinly sliced chile to the rice. Channa dal is dried yellow chickpeas, available in Asian markets. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.


2 cups Basmati rice, washed and soaked in water for 1 hour
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 level teaspoon mustard seeds
1 tablespoon channa dal
1/2 medium Spanish or mild onion, sliced
2 serrano chiles, stems and seeds remove, very thinly sliced
1 sprig fresh curry leaves or 1/2 teaspoon dried curry leaves, rehydrated and patted dry
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 quart water
Juice of 4 limes
Salt to taste
Chopped cilantro, whole cashew nuts, and lime wedges for garnish


Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Drain the rice.

Heat the vegetable oil in a casserole on top of the stove and add the mustard seeds and channa dal. As soon as the mustard seeds pop, add the onions, chile slices, and curry leaves. Fry until the onion is soft, and then add the turmeric powder.

Pour in the water, bring to a boil, and add the lime juice and salt to taste. Mix in the drained rice, bring to a boil, lower the heat a little, and boil gently until the water evaporates to the level of the rice, about 5 minutes.

Cover the casserole with a lid and transfer to the oven. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Serve the rice garnished with the cilantro, cashew nuts, and lime wedges.

Heat Scale: Mild

Dave’s Faves (Cookbooks)

system Misc. Leave a Comment

Q: Dear Dave,What other chef’s cookbook[s] do you enjoy reading/cooking from?–Cate A: Hello Cate:Now that’s an interesting question!  I like Jessica Harris (Beyond Gumbo), Steven Raichlen (The BBQ Guy), Richard Sterling (many food travel books), Robb Walsh (Legends of Texas BBQ), and Rick Brown (Grilling in America).  For food history, I enjoy Mark Kurlansky (Salt), and I really like the work …

Firewater: Beverage Etiquette Solved at Last

Dave DeWitt Hot & Spicy & Meatless Leave a Comment

By Dave DeWitt Miss Manners is completely baffled. Emily Post has no clue whatsoever. In fact, there’s a crisis these days in the world of etiquette because none of the experts can answer the question: what drinks should be served with hot and spicy foods? The turmoil has been caused by the fact that more and more Americans are consuming …

Sizzling Seafood, Part Two

Dave DeWitt Sizzling Seafood Leave a Comment

By Mike Stines, Ph.B. Almost every culture has their variety of piquant seafood… from Jamaican pepper shrimp to Creole shrimp and andouille jambalaya to Filipino hot and sour soup to Indian fish curry to Korean Jjamppong, a spicy noodle and shrimp soup… and everything in between but they all have a common thread, the liberal use of fiery chiles and …