Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Chile-Garlic Thokku/Chutney (Chile-Garlic Sauce With Soy Sauce)

Chile-Garlic Thokku/Chutney/Sauce is a condiment that you'll want to put on everything from french fries to fried rice. With lots of fragrant garlic and fiery chiles, you have to taste it to believe how good it is.

Chile-Garlic Thokku/Chutney/Sauce is a close cousin of Amma's Garlic Chutney and Chile Oil Sauce Without Borders!, a couple of family favorites!

Don't let the quantity scare you off! But the recipe maybe reduced to make a smaller quantity. The Chile-Garlic Thokku/Chutney/Sauce will last a long time in the fridge. This quantity works well for our family!


1. For those who would like a gluten-free sauce, use gluten-free soy sauce, tamari, shoyu, or coconut aminos.

2. If fresh chiles are unavailable, use ¼ - ½ cup Each of Red Chile flakes and ground hot Red Chiles (Indian ground Red Chiles) instead. Add  the chile after the garlic is golden and proceed according to the recipe.

3. Use a mild flavored oil like grape seed/peanut/safflower oil, or your favorite.

4. Chile-Garlic Thokku/Chutney/Sauce will last fresh for a few days at room temperature. It will last 3 months or more if kept in the refrigerator. Also, as with any preserves, pickles or chutneys, use a clean dry spoon to take out the required amount. DO NOT return unsused portion back to the original jar but keep it separate and use it up.

About 2½ cups


1 lb fresh hot Red chiles, stems removed (see note (2) above)
2 teaspoons Salt (or to taste)
2 bulbs/heads of Garlic, individual cloves peeled and trimmed
¼ - ½ cup Oil  
2-3 tablespoons Soy Sauce


Start heating the oil in a small saucepan over low heat.

Mince the garlic. I use a food processor but a garlic press or a good knife will work just fine. Scrape the garlic into the warm oil and mix well. Let the garlic cook slowly while the chiles are prepared.

No need to rinse out the bowl of the food processor if using. Place chiles into the bowl of the food processor and pulse until coarsely ground. If not using a food processor or a blender, chop finely and then use a mortar and pestle to mash it well. It should not be a smooth paste, but should have some texture left.

Stir and let cook gently until the garlic turns golden yellow in color but still kind of soft.  You can adjust the heat up or down to keep the garlic cooking slowly for about 20 minutes without browning.

When the garlic is ready, add the salt and chiles. Stir and cook gently for another 10 minutes until the thokku/sauce/chutney thickens. If using dried chile flakes and powder, cook for only about 4-5 minutes or until fragrant. Remove from heat.

Stir in the soy sauce and let cool. Taste and add more salt if needed.

Spoon into a clean jar with an airtight lid. Store in the fridge for 3 months or so. See note above for directions for storage.

Serve as a condiment with any meal or use to spice up recipes.


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