TOMATO CARROT RICE PASTE ( THOKKU/RELISH )





Tomato carot rice paste is one of my favorites and a handy preserve to have in stock always to make quick office school lunch box and a great accompaniment to other dishes like dosas and idlis, curd rice or chapatis. It is more like spicy pickle /thokku and very versatile , can be added to othe tomato gravy dishes to give more texture or to add up to the gravy when you run short of fresh tomatoes.





INGREDIENTS:



8-10  medium size ripe tomatoes chopped fine.
3 medium carrots , peeled and chopped finely.
2 tsp home made sambar powder
3-4 tsp  Kashmiri chilli  powder
Generous pinch of Asafoetida  powder
Pinch of turmeric powder
Salt As required.
Some curry leaves.
4 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp mustard seeds.

To roast and grind to a powder
2 tsp fenugreek seeds

Note: use a bit of tamrind if the tomatoes you use are not the tangy kind.


Method:
       

    Puree the tomatoes without adding water, or use  them finely chopped.
       
    In a big pan, add oil after heating it , crackle the  mustard seeds, add some curry leaves .
       
   Now carefully add the pureed mixture, which will  cause some splash, so better to switch off the gas  after the tempering is ready, let the pan cool a bit ,      then add the pureed mixture, this way you can avoid   a noisy hot splash.
       
    Switch on the gas on a medium flame. Add chilli  powder, asafoetida powder, turmeric powder,sambar  powder,chopped carrots,  salt. Cover the pan lightly  with a lid to avoid the splatters as the thokku cooks.
       
    This will take some time , as the thokku reduces  gradually , you need to stir occasionally, keeping the  flame on low. Preparation of any thokku is really no  ordeal as it can be done in a separate burner, while  you do rest of the cooking. No need to keep  monitoring generally.

    After some 20  minutes approximately , you will see  the thokku has reduced considerably and little  oil is  floating on top, now add the roasted  powdered  fenugreek powder to the thokku and stir well.
      
   Check for the spice and salt taste and remove from flame when the thokku has come to a thick pickle like consistency.Cool well, store in a clean dry bottle. 


 You can make great tasting tomato carrot rice any  time you want.