Thakkali/ Tomato Curry - Two ways!

As we progress in life, whether it's considered as moving by age or otherwise, a lot of changes come by. Some, you embrace it as a part of the flow of life; some, you take it with a slight tinge of disappointment; while some, you reject it outright. What approach is correct? I always feel that we have to adapt our reaction as per the situation presented. When it comes to our family - parents, spouses and kids - we always tend to take it as a part of life, whether we like the change or no. Why do we do that? Mainly because, we overlook our personal opinions and likes over the wider interest. We tell ourselves that our sacrifice is much worth as it would mean only we are dissatisfied, while we see much more faces glad and smiling. We value our close ones more than our thoughts and intentions in this case. But when it would come to other matters which are trivial, we may react in a far different manner. All depends on the situation...

Coming to today's post, something that my HD taught me during our early married days. I've already said in my tea post that I was a total zero and I had to be taught from making tea to what not, in order to survive in the kitchen. Not the fault of my umma, not at all! It was just that I never took interest in the kitchen, and like many of us, stuck to my favorite dialogue each time she called out for a help in the kitchen - "Umma, I'm studying!!!" Since HD had to ensure that he doesn't go hungry every time, he taught this to me as one of the kindergarten session - in Malayalam, we call it "baalapaadam"! :) The first time, I made it on my own, I ended up burning one of my mother-in-law's saucepans! Thank God I was a newly married bride at that time! After that, my lazy go-to has always been this simple curry, which just goes so well with a bowl of rice. Just reminds me that I've not had any kitchen lessons from HD for quite some time and I've to ensure that I eat his head to get some soon!!! ;)

Thakkali/ Tomato Curry - Two ways!
Serves 2


2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 onions, minced
1 tsp oil
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp urad dal
5-6 curry leaves
1 green chilly, slit
1/2 tsp ginger paste
1/2 tsp garlic paste
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp garam masala powder
Water as required
Salt to taste


No. 1, which is the way he taught me:
Heat oil in a saucepan, splutter the mustard seeds. Fry the urad dal till lightly browned, add the curry leaves and saute for a couple of seconds. Now add the onion and the green chillies and cook till the onions become slightly browned. Add the ginger and garlic paste and cook till the raw smell is gone. Now add the tomatoes, cook on low flame with close lids till the tomatoes get really mashed up. Keep stirring continuously so that it doesn't stick to the pan. Add water little by little while cooking.

Now add the masalas and cook for another 5 minutes. Add water as required, not too much! Allow to boil till it incorporates all the masala. Adjust the salt and serve warm with rice, dosas, idlis, etc.

No. 2, the way I like to make it:
Chop the tomatoes into big chunks and boil with little water in a saucepan until mushy. Switch off and allow to cool completely. Grind this into a fine paste and set aside.

In a saucepan, heat oil, splutter mustard seeds. Fry the urad dal and the curry leaves for a few moments. Add the ginger and garlic paste and saute continuously till raw smell is gone. Now add the onion and green chillies and saute till soft. This will keep the crunch of the onion - if you don't like it to bite, then saute more, as simple as that! Add in the masala powders and saute for around 5 minutes till well done. Add in the ground tomato and bring to boil, mixing in between for the flavors to incorporate. Add a little water if you find it too thick. Keep on simmer for around 5-7 minutes and switch off. Adjust salt and serve warm.

As I finish this post, I get a feeling that I am already done with that little bowl of thakkali curry up there, all dumped into a little bowl of rice and pushed in... hmm... some food, though may be simple, yet tend to play around with your tastebuds a lot... :)

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