Chyawanprash; 52 Herbs for daily detox and rejuvenation

The Rishi and The Princess
The intriguing story of Rishi Chyawan is documented in the ancient epic tale of India, the Mahabharata. Rishi Chyawan was a great seer. He was fully enlightened and thus carried no desires in his heart, except for union with the cosmic divine. It is said that he sat immobile, his senses fully retracted into the silent self-referral bliss of meditation, for numerous years, until one day, Sukanya, the young and beautiful daughter of King Sharyati, found him and accidentally awoke him from his yogic trance. The aging rishi and the young princess were soon wed. However, their conjugal bliss was overshadowed by the rishi’s old ascetic body.
It is then told that the celestial twin physicians, the Ashvinis, came to the rishi’s help.Physicians to the gods, they had garnered the entirety of Ayurvedic knowledge for the benefit of mankind and the celestial realm. They prepared a mixture that contained the best of what Mother Nature offered in terms of divine healing, balancing, and rejuvenating altogether 52 herbs, and presented it to Rishi Chyawan. Rishi Chyawan ate it, and it restored his body to its original youthful glow and functionality in no time! And the rishi and the princess lived happily ever after….
  The recipe became known as Chyawan’s Prash, or the herbal mixture of Chyawan, renown for its tonic and rejuvenative powers.
Vaidya’s Story
“The sweet taste and rich aroma of home-made chyawanprash infuses my early childhood memories spent in the village of Vaidyachak (“Vaidya’s village”) in Jharkand, NorthEast India. My father used to prepare Chyawanprash for our family members, as well as his patients, from scratch. I used to watch him select the herbs, prep them, and, finally cook them.

 

Years later, when I studied Ayurveda formally and learnt of the countless benefits of all the herbs that go into the Chyawanprash formula, I had the desire to share it with all my ayurvedic patients, specially after moving to the West. That’s how, several years ago, I initiated the process of sourcing and gathering the best quality wild-crafted herbs that would go into the preparation. I wanted to make sure that I incorporated every single ingredient that was mentioned in the original formula without compromise of quality.
Finally, a few months ago, everything came together, and I put together this “avaleha,” or “liquid preserve,” just the way my father used to make it! I am very happy to say It smells and tastes just as good as I remember it!
How does it work?
Chyawanprash is Ayurveda’s gift to us. It brings together the best of all the “divyaushadhi,” or divine herbs, in a recipe that is not only balancing, but is a delicious addition to daily diet. It’s no accident that it is considered India’s national tonic!
The preparation of these 52 herbs and plants involves seven stages and is complex because the herbs that are used have different properties that need to be prepared in distinct separate steps before being combined together, in order to get the full benefit. The original creators of this formula, the Ashwin Gods, taught the way of infusing the different groups of herbs together, based on how they can be categorized property-wise. The herbs that go into the mixture can be grouped into three:
  • rasayana or rejuvenative herbs
  • detoxifying and cleansing herbs
  • immuno-modulatory herbs
Deriving the lipid and water soluble fractions of these herbs, while infusing their balancing properties into the base of the alma berry paste (amalaki) is thus a challenging process that has to go through different time-sensitive steps. But when it is done properly, when the powerful molecules have been duly prepared and mixed in with the organic sugar and honey, the formulation is fully potent and active, benefiting the body as soon as it touches the oral mucosa. Once in the stomach, it detoxifies traveling through the gaps of the tissues and nourishing all the aspects of the physiology.

 

Chyawanprash is a daily tonic that is good for all age groups all the time – except infants and children age 5 and under. The original formula contains ghee, cane sugar, and honey. Please note that the addition of ghee, honey, and sugar is  necessary as they help coat the herbal molecules and deliver them to the deeper tissues. They are added as balancing ingredients because the original formula is very potent with its concentrated content of herbs and amla. They are not flavoring agents. And since they are consumed in conjunction with the dozens of herbs that are in the formula, they body is able to process and metabolize them fully. You will not make ama from the ghee, the sugar, or the honey – no one should experience discomfort or imbalance from the sugar and fat content. However, if you have fat and sugar sensitivities or prefer to avoid consuming either or both, I have put together a Chyawanprash Syrup that contains no added fat (ghee) and no added sugar (honey or raw can sugar). For those who have concerns consuming fat and/or sugar, this will be the ideal way to get the rejuvenative benefit of all the rasayana and other herbs that are part of the original formula.

What do Charak Samhita Sutra-s say about Chyawanprash?
According to the Charak Samhita, verses 70-74, Chyawanprash has countless health benefits!
Verse 70 says that:

Chyawanprash is a  great tonic for the lungs, it can take care of chronic cough, and helps alleviate breathing trouble. It supports and helps older physiologies, helps reverse aging, and it nourishes the growth of children and young adults.

Verse 71 says:

Chyawanprash supports the vocal chords; nurtures all seven tissues; nourishes the heart; pacifies Vata dosha;  nourishes the blood; takes care of excessive thirst. It helps the urinary tract; nourishes the reproductive fluid, and pacifies the aggravated dosha-s in the urinary tract.
Verse 72 says:

It can be consumed as a food item, as a dessert, after your midday meal. Do not eat at night as it can be too energizing and may interfere with sleep. Consuming chyawanprash as part of your daily diet will rejuvenate all age groups, making the old young again, and the young stronger!
Verse 73 says:

Increases intelligence; boosts memory; enhances glow and complexion of the skin; keeps the body disease-free; lengthens the life-span; strengthens all five senses. Chyawanprash supports and promotes marital or conjugal bliss, strengthening both male and female physiologies! It also supports the digestive metabolic fire; increases overall radiance; pacifies apana vata.
Verse 74 says:

This verse tells us that chyawanprash could also be used as part of the “kayakalpa” protocol. “Kayakalpa” literally means restoring youth to the body inside and out! There are two kinds of kayakalpa mentioned the Charak Samhita. One is called “Kuti praveshik” which is a protocol that is carried out indoors, under strict supervision. The other is “vaat tapik” or outdoors. The indoors protocol is more efficient, and the consumption of Chyawanprash is recommended for this protocol. This verse says that whoever uses Chyawanprash as a rasayana for the reversal of aging, will get all the benefits of kayakalpa – removal of old age, rejuvenation, reclaiming beauty, strength, youthful skin, etc. This verse confirms that Chyawanprash can be used on a daily basis, safely and effectively, for daily rejuvenation; or as a clinical preparation taken under supervision with specific dosage requirements when conducting “kayakalpa” treatments for the ultimate cleansing and renewing protocol that Ayurveda can offer.

Mucuna Instant coffee

Does your morning cup of coffee act as a tridoshic body and brain tonic? Is it rejuvenating to all your bodily tissues? Nourishing for your nerves? Calming for your mind, and supporting your daily detox through your kidneys and colon? Is it a good source of prebiotic that will nourish the friendly bacteria in your colon? If it is not, then you are starting your day on the wrong foot!

We all know the side-effects of caffeine, but we also know how hard it can be to let go of old habits… But now you can have your coffee and drink it too! Vaidya’s latest cutting edge SVA formulation is a delicious blend of ancient ayurvedic ingredients that will not only give your physiology an immediate boost, but will also give you balancing and bliss-enhancing benefits with long term use. He has put together
  • Kapikachhu (Mucuna pruriens)
  • Wild date seed
  • Root Chicory
  • Haritaki
to bring us a cup of the richest caffeine free coffee substitute. Why does ingredients in particular?

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Ingredients: 
Kapikachhu (Mucuna pruriens)
Wild date seed
Root Chicory
Haritaki
Mucuna pruriens beans are a natural rich source of L-Dopa: a chemical naturally produced in humans, some animals and plants via biosynthesis. L-Dopa is the precursor to the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine (noradrenaline), and epinephrine (adrenaline) that play important roles in the human brain and body. Dopamine is the bliss-giving neurotransmitter that our brains thrive on.
Unlike synthetic artificial Dopamine, the Dopamine contained in the Mucuna beans are free from side-effects, and they get secreted out of the body faster that synthetic dopamine. 1-3 cups a day are safe and ideal for regular consumption.
 
Health Benefits:
Your SVA Mucuna brew contains the following balancing and bliss-enhancing ingredients: o-CHICORY-ROOT-570
Mucuna: in Ayurveda, Mucuna has been recommended since the dawn of time as a brain and body tonic. It is particularly rejuvenating for the seven tissues and the reproductive fluid for men and women. It  nourishes the nerves, and calms the mind. Mucuna also helps supports the kidneys in their overall functions.
Wild date seeds: recommended in Ayurveda for detoxing and nourishing the muscle tissue.
Root Chicory (Cichorium intybus var. sativum) has been cultivated in Europe and the Mediterranean region as a coffee substitute, as well as used as a coffee additive in parts of Southeast Asia, South Africa and southern United States. The root contains up to 20% inulin – a great source of soluble dietary fiber and is thus added to yogurts as a prebiotic. Research finds that inulin may help with weight loss, constipation, improving bowel function, and general health. Chicory was found to potentially increase calcium absorption and bone density. It is a functional food. In Sanskrit, Chicory is called kashmard: that which helps the lungs through gentle detox,  nurturing and supporting them by eliminating daily build-up from environmental pollution.
Haritaki is known to have so many healing and balancing properties in Ayurveda, including restorative properties for the colon. Haritaki is often compared to mother’s milk – full nourishing benefits and no harm!  It is best known as a paatya plant – it helps us stay on the “path of health” by maintaining our body’s intelligence on all levels: physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual.
Altogether, Vaidya Mishra has put together this delicious Mucuna blend to help ease the mind, support your nervous system against daily stress, pacify all three doshas; nurture your body and lungs.image description
You can brew this mixture like you would regular instant coffee, and enjoy it with or without milk, with or without a sweetener – depending on your preference. You will not believe how good it tastes! And how much instant waves of bliss it will procure, giving you immediate energy through better oxygenation to the brain and lungs. Regular consumption of this blend will have cumulative benefits for your nervous system and colon overall.
Help us name this newest SVA formulation. Join our naming contest, or Namkaran, by requesting your free sample of “Mucuna Coffee” (temporary name). Email us at info@prana-center.com to request your free sample and then email us back to give us your naming suggestions. Prizes will be announced shortly.

Sweet Summer Juice Blend

It’s too tempting not to have a drink, or two specially in the hot days of summer! How long can you steer clear of the sweet, juicy, refreshing experience of a smoothy or a juice blend?  But you have to beware. Smoothies and juices can dilute your digestive agni within minutes, giving you the feeling of satiation but causing long-term harm. In addition,  protein powders and/or other minerals and vitamins also add an additional layer of complication. You may not feel the effects right away, but such mixtures are not ayurvedically ideal to keep a happy digestive balance. But we all could do with a glass or two of sweet summer drinks, so here is a balanced recipe that will keep all your doshas in check, rehydrate you, and soothe your heart and mind.

This recipe will make about 25-30 fluid ounces
  • 1 red apple
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 pear
  • 2-3 carrot sticks
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lime
  • 3-5 celery sticks
  • a good handful of fresh cilantro leaves
  • 2-3 chunks of fresh ginger (thumb-size)

variation: you can also replace one apple with some grapes, or blueberries if you like. However, economically speaking, such fruits are always better just eaten as is, as they tend to be a little more expensive than apples and pears, and you will need larger amounts to yield juice. If your juicer is powerful enough, you can just slice/dice your apples and orange/lime and throw into your juicer.

This recipe will pacify your pitta through the sweet juicy fruits, but keep vata and kapha in check with the lime and the ginger. You can reduce the amount of ginger if you tend to have high pitta, but must keep some to keep your agni ignited so it can digest the juice. The celery will help further alkalize and balance the sweetness of the blend. If you are sensitive to sugar, or are avoiding sugar in general, you can avoid the carrots. This drink will rehydrate, soothe, and even detox some through the cilantro. It is a perfect summer juice blend.

Pumpkin your Pie!

Ingredients:

Filling:
Carrots – 6 oz. (cooked/boiled in water)
Sweet yam – 8 oz. (cooked/boiled in water)
Soma salt – 1/2 tsp.
Raw sugar – 1  1/2 cup
Arrow root – 1 Tbsp.
Kid’s Masala no.2 – 2 tsp (may replace with a pinch of vanilla powser or omit if unavailable)
Nutmeg powder – 1/4 tsp.
Ginger powder – 1 tsp.
Baking powder – 1/2 tsp.
Shredded Almond – 4 oz.

Topping:
Heavy whipping cream – 4 oz.
Fresh paneer – 4 oz.

Pie crust:
(Please use your traditional pie crust recipe).

Method: 

3y6a0n9iCombine all ingredients, except for the pie crust and topping, in a food processor or blender until smooth.  Pour into pie crust.  Bake for 10 minutes.

Step 2:  Whisk heavy whipping cream and freshly made paneer (do not completely strain the whey out so it is softer).  Spread it on top of the baked pie.  Garnish with sliced almonds.

Method:

Chocolate Quinoa Laddus for Valentine

Rose Petal Sesame Bites/ladoos

70% Toasted sesame seeds, first toasted then powdered
30% SVA Rose Petal Preserve
Add both to a bowl and mix in together with your fingers until you get a soft dough, then shape them into little bite size balls and enjoy!

RPSBI-img1Optional: can add some fresh ground black pepper to taste
Can add a pinch of Soma Salt

Prep time: 5 minutes
Good for all – 3 dosha pacifying, rose and sugar are cooling to pitta, sesame is warm and balancing for vata and kapha.
Contraindication: highly addictive!

 

Rose Petal Yogurt Shake or Lassi

4 oz yogurt
8 oz water
RPSBI-img31 tsp SVA Rose Petal Preserve
Mix with a spoon or in a blender and enjoy!

Optional: fresh ground black pepper 1/8 tsp

Prep time: 3 minutes Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day for children from 6 to 66!

Rosy Morning Stewed Fruits

According to Vaidya, it is nice to start your day with stewed apple or pear to slowly re-ignite your agni. You may stew your fruit(s) overnight in a slow cooker or make them minutes on your stovetop just before consuming them. Here is a nice little twist to make them pleasantly balancing!

Add ¼ tsp of SVA Rose Petal Preserve per apple or pear for a blissful head-start of your day!

Nutty Rosy Spread

We’ve all succumbed to the peanut and jelly sandwich at one point, not without guilt! Here is a healthy happy version that will satisfy your taste-buds without imbalancing your doshas!
80% almond butter
20% Rose Petal Preserve
You can either mix them and spread on roti or bread, or lay down the almond butter first and top it with the rose preserve.

RPSBI-img5.pngPrep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day.

Gluten Free Bread Patties

Consuming the rose preserve with bread is most delicious, but many of us choose to avoid gluten and/or wheat. Here is a delicious gluten-free recipe. It will have a pleasant bitter taste because of the millet and quinoa.

40% Millet flour
40% Quinoa Flour
20% Almond meal
1 Tablespoon yogurt
A dash of Soma Salt
¼ tsp water
1 tsp cumin seeds
Mix all into a sticky dough. You will not get a clean dough, it will feel unformed, but that’s ok, do not add more flour. Then take a small part and roll out in the palm of your hand into patties and cook on an iron skillet. May add a few drops of Mum’sRPSBI-img4.png ghee on the skillet but it is not necessary. Once the dough is heated, the stickiness will go away. These make delicious little bread patties. Eat with any meal, but particularly with Rose Preserve!

Prep time: 30 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.
Good for any season and any time of day.
The dough can be refrigerated for 3-4 days.

Roses for a Snack

RPSBI-img640% raisins
40% toasted pine-nuts
20% Rose Petal Preserve
Mix all the ingredients together and carry with you and snack on throughout the day for a sustaining bliss-inducing snack

Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

You can keep the unused portion for 3-4 days.

Blissful Morning Breakfast

Add Rose preserve to your breakfast but not if you are consuming milk. The ascorbic acid in the preserve will curdle the milk and cause indigestion.

High Pitta Pacifying Rehydration Drink

1 tsp of Rose Petal Preserve
4 oz of water
5 Herbal Memory Drops of SVA Soma Cal
Mix and drink.

Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day and anybody, specially when feeling emotionally hot and upset!

Mental and Emotional Rose Energy

4oz water.
1 tsp Rose Petal Preserver
2 drops Brahmi Nectar

Mix and drink
Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day.

Creamy Rose

Milk cream top – 2 tablespoon
1 teaspoon of rose preserve

Eat as is or with some bread!

Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day.

Rose Bud Tea

RPSBI-img7.png2 rosebuds
2 pinches DGL powder
½ tsp Fennel seeds
8 oz water
boil slowly in a covered pot. Boil for 3 minutes. Switch off cool and enjoy. Great for pacifying pachaka and sadhaka pitta-s.

Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper.

Good for any season and any time of day.

Rose Nectar drink

5 drops of SVA Rose Nectar drops
5 drops SVA DGL Nectar Drops
8oz water
This recipe has the same properties as the Rose Bud Tea above, if you don’t have time to make the tea, you can use the drops instead.

Prep time: 3 minutes
Pitta and Vata Pacifying. Kapha dosha pacifying when consumed with Black pepper Nectar Drops.

 

Intro to Coconut

Scrumptious Coconut Chutney

Ayurvedic Crepes? With home-made lime pickle? Plus Date-coconut spread to top it off? Bring it on!

We always welcome your contributions to Vaidya’s newsletter, specially when they come to enrich your SVA kitchen! Total health starts with delicious satwic food, made with the proper “samskar” and “samyog” – proper preparation steps and proper combination of ingredients.

Today we share recipes from Sarah M. and Daria S. They are classical recipes from the indian continent, now adapted to our modern lifestyles and confirmed SVA by Vaidya!

Sarah M. sends us a north indian favorite, the “cheela” or crepe! It is a delicious way of consuming protein predominant mung dahl, to have a sustaining yet light meal. Also easy to combine with other dishes and fillers. We leave it up to your imagination!

Sarah writes:

“Dear Vaidya,

“I love your newsletter and am always so grateful for the information you send out. I just wanted to send a recipe that I’ve been making regularly and am really enjoying- perhaps others will like it too. Thank you for always inspiring me towards greater health and wellns.

Blessings, Swati J*

Easy Cheela (Daal Pancake)

Soak 1 cup washed organic split yellow mung daal in water for at least two hrs. Overnight is best.
AC-imgStrain daal. Put in a blender with a bit of churna (Mum’s Masala is best), salt and any other herbs (like cilantro, ginger etc.) that you might want to add. Sometimes a bit of turmeric is nice for a golden yellow pancake. Make sure the mix is pourable. Adding more water will make the pancakes more crepe-like, thicker batter is better for smaller and thicker pancakes. mung cheela Heat up cast iron griddle on medium + heat and use a little ghee to make it nonstick. Pour batter onto griddle in desired sizes. Flip when small bubbles appear. Voila! Cheela.  Excellent with a simple Palak Paneer or just a good chutney. Larger pancakes make excellent wraps. I usually eat mine with my “Vaidya approved” green protein which creates a very simple, light and wholesome meal. I have been keeping a bowl of daal soaking in the fridge at all times so that I can make a quick daal pancake at any meal. Enjoy!”

Lime Pickle to go with your cheela


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Here is a delicious Lime Pickle recipe from Daria S. that can go with your cheela, approved by Vaidya! As you know, in our SVA diets, we always favor lime over lemons, due to their alkaline rather than acidic after-effects.  lime pickle Lime
pickle is a delicious way of pacifying Vata, alkalizing your body, while you sharpen your taste-buds and hone your digestive agni. You will also get the pleasure of preparing it yourself through simple easy steps. Here’s what Daria sent us.


Ingredients:

Fresh organic limes (20-25) washed and completely dried
½ – ¾ cup Soma Salt
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 Tbsp fenugreek
1 tsp turmeric powder – make sure you toast this and not use it raw so it is gentler on the liver
Glass jar with plastic or glass lid (DO NOT use metal lid as the lime and salt will corrode/rust); best to sterilize the jar and thoroughly dry before use

Instructions:

  1. Slice limes into thin lengthwise slices (slice in half, then 3-4 slices from each half) preserving the juice; remove any seeds, stems, etc. I wear latex or vinyl gloves when slicing to prevent bacteria from getting into the mixture.
  2. Place slices into clean, dry jar and add salt
  3. Shake jar to coat all pieces, and keep aside. Try to expose to sunlight – place on your counter where you receive daily sunlight – for 5-7 days until the limes become tender; shake the jar well at least twice daily.
  4. Dry roast cumin and fenugreek, then grind to powder
  5. Add ground spice mixture and the turmeric to the jar of salted lime slices, mix well
  6. Continue to shake the jar and mix well at least twice daily for 2-4 weeks (depending upon the temperature; the warmer the temperature, the less time it will take to be ready) until the mixture is thick and the limes soft
  7. Preserve in dry airtight jar; does not need refrigeration.

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And top it all off with a delicious date- coconut spread, another SVA approved recipe from Daria: this is a delicious cooling recipe,  coconut specially for the hot summer months, and particularly if you tend to be more of a pitta and vata constitution, or have more agni and marut by birth. If you are endowed with a more soma physiology, a fresh date, or a piece of coconut will work best for you for now….

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Ingredients

10-15 large organic dates (double the number if they are small)
1/3 cup dry organic, unsweetened shredded coconut or fresh, ground
1 -2 tsp ghee dates
¼ tsp. or less fresh ground organic cardamom seeds to taste
Small pinch mineral salt
Pinch of saffron
Organic lime juice to taste

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Soak dates in water overnight with the saffron; remove pits
  2. Blend dates until nearly liquefied
  3. Grind cardamom seeds
  4. Heat ghee, add blended date mixture, and then add all other ingredients except lime juice
  5. Cook for 10-15 minutes on low or medium heat
  6. Add lime juice (to taste) and mix when somewhat cool

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Do you have a recipe or recipe ideas, or questions about food ingredients or items? Send them to us at: livingtradition@prana-center.com, Vaidya will be happy to review them and we can share them with the SVA community at large.

Coconut Matters! Classy Coconut Chutney

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You will impress family and friends with this simple but so delicious coconut chutney recipe. It replaces your Ranch dressing or any other creamy tasty satisfying sauce any day! It is rich in flavor and nourishing, with added protein (when you add the Kala Chana Besan – more info below). It’s easy to assemble and takes literally a couple of minutes to make.

You will need:

4oz fresh coconut flesh – weight by weight
1 oz toasted split black grams (also available as “split Kala Chana” from any indian grocery store) – optional
1/2 tsp Mum’s Masala (or your own spice blend in dry toasted form)
1/4 tsp Soma Salt
1 whole green Thai chili – optional or you can use more if your physiology can handle it!
2 thin slices of fresh ginger – or you can use more if you like it!
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 fresh squeezed lime juice
1/2 tsp olive oil

The split black grams needs to be dry toasted in a pan (or your oven) before using. Adding this ingredient will give added protein content to your recipe, specially if you are a high agni/ high pitta person you will enjoy it. It also gives it an added layer of nutty flavor so it is worth your while to try and get this. Otherwise: just assemble all your ingredients and put them into a blender and press on! You may need some water to get things started, have a 1/4 cup of room temperature water available and add to your mixture as it blends. You want a creamy rich texture but not too watery so add water only as it needs to blend. Check your consistency to see if it is to your liking and taste the salt and/or lime. You can add more or less to your liking. And you are done! Your chutney is ready to be enjoyed with any meal. Let us know how it came out!

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