The Superstars of South Indian Tiffin
If there's one thing that South India is truly passionate about, it's food. Whether you've grown up with South Indian food or grown to love it, there's no denying the satisfaction that comes from a well-made tiffin.
Eating dishes like Dosa and Idlies for breakfast, dates back to 18th century Tamil Nadu. Before that, people never ate breakfast - they would begin with a midday meal followed by dinner. Tiffin is a fairly new concept in Tamil history.
But where did the word tiffin come from? It originates from the Old English verb "Tiffing" which means having a small sip and entered our vocabulary in the early 19th century. Food historians believe that due to the heat, colonial sahibs preferred a light midday meal and a heavy dinner. This light meal is what the world now knows as Tiffin.
Today, in households across the south, tiffin is enjoyed for breakfast, evening snack and dinner, where the family gathers together and food is prepared fresh. While the main dishes like Dosa, Vada and Idly are varied, they generally taste the same across the country. What makes all the difference, in terms of flavour and taste, are the accompaniments - chutneys and sambar. Or as we would like to call them, The Superstars.
Universal Star Coconut Chutney:
Our love for coconut chutney is eternal. The most recognised chutney in all of India, the coconut chutney for dosa is quintessentially South. It's flavour profile suits a diverse range of dishes and it never fails to enhance every meal that it is a part of. Tiffin is incomplete without the freshness and universal appeal of Coconut Chutney.
Rocking Star Tomato Chutney:
The spicy tomato chutney stands out on your plate with its bright red colour and delightful tanginess. It takes on different avatars, as some onion tomato recipes would suggest.
Every home has their unique spin on the dish, but one thing's is undoubtedly the same - the tomato chutney is gold! It brings a whirlwind of flavour to your tiffin.
Evergreen Star Coriander Chutney:
The first thing that strikes you about coriander chutney or its cousin, mint coriander chutney is just how fresh it always is. It pairs so well with almost every dish and it's great to experiment with as well. Drop some peanuts in? Sure thing! Want to eat it with rice instead? Why not! There's never been a more versatile chutney we love to love.
Icon Star Peanut Chutney:
Call it peanut chutney or groundnut chutney, from the minute it's served on your place, you know you'll never get enough of it. Smooth and creamy in texture but hot to taste, this dish is almost a contradiction in itself. Its spice level are off the charts but you're inexplicable drawn to this Andhra style peanut chutney.
Timeless Star Sambar:
While its origins are disputed across the states, the humble south indian sambar is an amalgamation of all things good. Served piping hot, it unites everything on your plate for a most flavour some experience. Even the most ordinary meal turns into a sumptuous affair, with a flair only sambar can bring.
The best part is that it's not at all difficult to enjoy a sumptuous, star-studded meal whenever you get a sudden craving. If you're too tired to cook up an elaborate family meal, it will take you just a few seconds to whip up a delicious spread with a little help from Chutnefy . So just sit back, relax and enjoy the experience!