Spicy Sour Bimbli Chutney



{Due to a recent virus attack I lost a whole bunch of recipe on my blog. I am slowly working on posting them back one by one. I am going to start with the recipes I am getting most requests for. If you remember/want to try one of my earlier recipes which is now not in this blog please write to be at chinmayie.bhat@gmail.com and i’ll try to post it as soon as possible. I am basically just going to re-post the recipe as it was. So some of the content might not be so relevant today but my intention is to get them all back  and I  have over 80 posts to re-blog. Thank you! }


Spicy Sour Bimbli Chutney


As a child I had a very strong liking for anything sour, tangy or tart. I could eat Green Mangoes, Gooseberries, Tamarind, Starfruits, and many other very tangy fruits without blinking an eye. One such fruit which was loved and relished with a pinch of salt on the side was ‘Bimbli’ or ‘Bimpuli’.

Almost every house in Coastal Karnataka has a Bimbli tree in it’s backyard. My grand mothers place had one and now my mom’s place has one.


Averrhoa bilimbi, bilimbi, bimbli, belimbing, blimbling, biling or bimbiri


Averrhoa bilimbi, commonly known as bilimbi, bimbli, belimbing, blimbling, biling or bimbiri is a sour, tangy, juicy fruit which makes a regular appearance in the Coastal Karnataka cuisine if available. It’s shaped like a small cucumber and tastes almost like a star fruit. It is crisp when green and slightly soft and juicy when ripe.


Averrhoa bilimbi, bilimbi, bimbli, belimbing, blimbling, biling or bimbiri


These beautiful Bimbli trees with an almost florescent colored leaves, looking lush and green, bear fruits through out the year. With one of these trees you almost don’t have to buy tamarind or any souring agent for your curries. It is added to dal/lentils, coconut based curries, chutneys, pickles and used in many other ways in the kitchen. In addition to the sourness it’s used for, it has a very unique flavor which  gives the curries a special taste which is very different from tamarind.


Averrhoa bilimbi, bilimbi, bimbli, belimbing, blimbling, biling or bimbiri


This time while I was at my mom’s place, after eating Bimbli to my hearts content, I decided to make some Gojju or Chutney out of it. Bimbli works really well in chutneys of all kinds. It’s tangy flesh gets soft when cooked and makes a delicious chutney which is great paired with almost anything from crackers, breads to rice. Traditionally tangy fruits like these are always cooked with a little bit to Jaggery to result in a sweet and sour flavor but I decided to just highlight the sour acidic taste of Bimbli with a nice sharp heat of green chilies.

It’s quick to make, looks beautiful and tastes even better!

If you happen to be living int he coastal karantaka and have a Bimbli tree in your backyard, make sure you try this chutney.


Averrhoa bilimbi, bilimbi, bimbli, belimbing, blimbling, biling or bimbiri


This chutney is quite watery as I served it with rice. Reduce the water to half a cup if you want a thicker chutney

Skip asafetida if you are not fond of it but i highly recommend it.

Chutney can be stored for up tot a week if refrigerated in an airtight container.

Although there is no substitution for Bimbli, I am sure you can use the same recipe to make a mango chutney. Replace sliced bimbli with finely grated raw green mango.


Spicy Sour Bimbli Chutney



  • 2 cups of bimbli cut into then slices.
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp black mustard sees
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 4-5 green chilies
  • 2-3 springs of curry leaves
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • salt
  • 1/2 tsp asafotida (optional)

Heat oil in a pan. add the mustard seeds. when it starts to splutter add the fenugreek seeds. Fry till fragrant (taking care not to burn) and add the chopped green chilies and curry leaves. now add the sliced bimbli and mix everything well. Add a cup of water and let it come to a boil. Add the turmeric and salt. mix well and let it simmer for 5 minutes. If using asafetida add it to the chutney now and turn of f the heat.


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