Friday, April 2, 2010

టమేట పచ్చడి- Tamata Pacchadi: Tomato Chutney

Serves: Fills a 500 ml bottle. Preparation time: 30 minutes.

Green Tomato Chutney

6 medium sized Green Tomatoes
5 Green chillies
6 tsp Oil
2 Tsp Mustard seeds (Rai, Avalu)
1 Tsp Turmeric
1 shallow Tsp Asafoetida
1 shallow Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 Tsp or to taste; Salt
1/4 Tsp Sugar
3 sprigs Cilantro

1. Chop Tomatoes, Green Chillies into chunks. Fine chop the Cilantro.
2. Heat 4 Tsps oil. Add Green chillies and Green tomatoes. Cover and cook on low flame until tomatoes soften, around 6 minutes.
Add Tamarind paste and leave to cool.
3. Heat 2 Tsps oil in a pan. Add Mustard seeds. When they splutter, switch off flame and add Fenugreek powder, Asafoetida, Turmeric. Let it cool. 
4. Grinding:
First grind the spice mix from step 3. Next add the vegetables from step 2, mix in salt & sugar and grind on pulse/whipping mode with quick spurts of power so that the tomatoes are not completely mashed
5. Add Cilantro, transfer into a bottle, and refrigerate.

Ripe (Red) Tomato Chutney

6 medium sized Ripe (Red) Tomatoes
3 Tsps Oil
2 heaped Tsp Split Black Gram
4 Dry Red chillies
1 heaped Tsp Coriander seeds
1 heaped Tsp Cumin seeds
1 level Tsp Mustard seeds
1 level Tsp Turmeric
1 level Tsp Asafoetida
1 level Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 Tsp or to taste; Salt
1/4 Tsp Sugar
3 sprigs Cilantro

1. Chop Tomatoes into chunks. Finely chop the Cilantro. Break up the Dry red chilli into small bits.
2. Heat 1 Tsp oil in a pan. Add tomatoes, cover and let simmer until tomatoes wither/go tender, but not completely done. Add Tamarind paste and leave to cool.
3. Heat 2 Tsps oil in pan. Add Black Gram and Dry Red chillies. When black gram turns pale gold, add Coriander and Cumin seeds. When Black Gram goes golden brown (dry chillies would be dark brown & giving off an aroma by now), add Mustard seeds, they'll splutter. Switch off flame and add Fenugreek powder, Turmeric and Asafoetida. Leave to cool.
4. Grinding:
First add the spice mix from step 2 and grind. Then add Salt, Sugar and the Tomatoes from step 3 and coarse grind on pulse/whipping mode with quick spurts of power.
5. Mix in the chopped cilantro. Bottle and refrigerate.

1. You can mix and match the ingredients as per taste, like I made a red-green tomato pacchadi recipe mix since my green tomatoes were actually yellowing.
2. Manju pinni suggests: Prepare the chutney first and then pour the tempering  of step 3 over it right at the end. This way, the spices smell fresh, the seeds (black gram, mustard) are whole & crisp instead of being ground down.
3. If preparing a large quantity, it may be wise to first dry roast the Cumin and Coriander seeds separately and then add them to the fried black gram-red chillies. This is because all these spices have different cooking times and can easily stay undercooked/get burnt within a few seconds of misjudged timing.
4. Cumin & Coriander seeds can be substituted with powders. 
5. If using whole Fenugreek seeds: Roast to a black-brown, leave to cool and powder. Then add to the cooled tempering from step 3

Culture & Health:
Green or Ripe tomato pacchadi is eaten with fresh hot rice & ghee. It is also an excellent accompaniment with Dosas, Idlis, Uttappams. It is an awesome spread for sandwiches and savoury snacks. Totally yummy with yogurt-rice.
Fresh pacchadis are full of vitamins and antioxidants, they can be made with very little oil & salt for the health conscious.

The Green Tomato pacchadi recipe is my mom-in-law's (Indira aunty), Krishna's favourite favourite favourite.
The Ripe tomato pacchadi recipe is mom's, it was an ever-green (or should I say ever-red) part of our family menu, my sister LOVED it like crazy, and mom makes it frequently.
Do you guys know what Tomato is called in Telugu? A local cultivar that produced small sour fruit was called "Ramamulagakaaya" during my mother's childhood. Of course, it is a now-extinct name, we only see normal tomatoes in the market, and Tomato is Tamata for us! :-)


  1. Exelent! nee orpuki na joharlu.chaala detail ga rastunnavu.nadoka chinna salaha emitante nuvvu thiragamatha with inguva antha pachadi ayinaka veste minapappu crisp gavuntundi and inguva smell baguntundi.