Thoroughly wash and dry the bunch of coriander. If the roots are still attached to the bunch, give them a good scrub in order to remove any grit.
Toast the cumin seeds in a dry pan, until they start to pop and are fragrant. Crush in a mortar, and set aside to cool.
Peel the ginger, and chop into fine shreds. Roughly chop the chilli: if you prefer a milder chutney, remove the seeds and rib from the chilli.
Zest and juice the lemon, but keep them separate.
Blend all the ingredients, except for the lemon juice, until the mix becomes smooth. You may need to add a few tablespoons of water to help the blender along. Taste the chutney, and add the lemon juice, if you feel it is necessary.
It will keep a few days in the refrigerator, but may lose its bright green colour over time.
This quick chutney if often used as a dipping sauce for fried snacks, breads, or even as an accompaniment to curries. It can be used instead of chilli sauce in your cooking, or it can be mixed with yoghurt as a marinade for meats or vegetables destined for the barbecue.
The amount of salt may seem a little excessive, but it is mainly used as a preservative. If you find the chutney too salty, reduce the amount. Just be aware that your chutney may not keep as long.
Coriander roots have a wonderfully earthy flavour. Although they are mostly used in Thai cooking, they bring a pleasing pungency to the chutney. However, as they can harbour a lot of grit, do make sure you wash the roots thoroughly before eating them.
«The acidity of the lemon juice and oxidation will cause the chutney to lose its bright colour. To prevent this change, omit the lemon juice. If keeping the chutney for a later use, keep in a tightly sealed jar, and cover the chutney with oil.»