The other day my kitchen ran out of onions. There is a vegetable cart vendor outside my son’s school. I usually buy the day’s requirements from him. 

As I was before time for school, I had the time to ask this question to him which I was always wondering about vegetable sellers. 

I ask my friend, I do call him my friend as I meet him 5 days a week, chat with him, miss him when he does not come as I have to go else where to buy my daily vegetables and inquire where he was when he comes back, thus he can be called my friend.

I ask him,” what do you do with your leftover vegetables? What happens to the surplus? Because the product is such its self life is just 2 days? Do you give the left over to the restaurants?”

He tells me, “Ben there is never surplus.”

I am amazed with his answer,”What ? How is it possible?”

He confidently tells me,” my calculation is such, its never extra, I know the demand and thats what I buy from the farmers market at 5 a.m. every morning, I do perfect hisab kitab (accounting) sometimes I have extra about 250 grams  of a particular vegetable left, we use it at my home…

” I never give it to the restaurants, they want to buy at throw away prices and my rule is I never sell if I don’t make a profit…”

Wow! just like that this simple vendor taught me two basic rules of running a business which sometimes big business units fail to remember…

1. Detailed  accounting 

2 Never sell if you don’t earn out if it..

So simple, so basic yet so right…

As I had bought extra onions, decided to make this onion churney we love, I make it with idlis…

That evening I also cooked buttermilk rasam, tomato chutney and Idlis. In this post I am sharing the onion chutney recipe from the cook book Dakshin. If you love south indian food, this is the ultimate cookbook..

These Idlis where not perfect but my little assistant helped me with them so they might not look perfect but they are full of love 😊
Recipe: Onion chutney


2 tbsp oil

2 whole dry red chillies 

2 green chilies 

2 tsp mustard seeds

4 tsp black gram dal 

1/2 tsp asafoetida

3 onions chopped fine

Small bunch of coriander leaves 

4-5 curry leaves 

Small size ball of tamarind

Salt to taste


  • Fry in one tbsp of oil red chilies, green chilies, gram dal, mustard seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida powder. Keep aside.
  • Heat the remaining oil and fry the onions till they are golden in color.
  • Grind all the ingredients into a paste in a liquidised add the coriander, tamarind and salt

Serve with idlis or rice and ghee.  

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