Friday, July 31, 2009

Tomato Santosh, Roasted Curry Leaves Spice Blend

TOMATO SANTOSH Roasted Curry Leaves Spice Blend
Tomato Santosh is a superb side dish which makes an equally good accompaniment with both rice and rotis. It could be had with bread too. This is one of the few dishes which I had learnt from my Amma after marriage. It’s very simple to make and can be stored refrigerated in air tight containers for a couple of days. The name is quite interesting isn’t it?! Wonder why it is called Santosh(happiness)! any guesses?

Recipe for Tomato Santosh:
7-8 tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp sambar powder or red chilli powder
1 fistful peanuts, roasted, skinned, coarsely ground
8-10 curry leaves
2-3 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped
Salt to taste
Sugar/crushed jaggery to taste ( I used 1-2 tbsp)
2-3 tsp oil

1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Cumin seeds


In a Heavy bottomed vessel/Kadhai heat oil and put mustard and cumin seeds. Once it begins to crackle add the tomatoes and sauté for a few seconds, then add turmeric powder, Sambar /chilli powder, peanut powder, salt, sugar/jaggery mix well and let it cook for a minute or two.
Next add the curry leaves, and coriander leaves mix all the ingredients gently. Check for the spice balance, add and adjust (if) as required.
Cover and simmer with occasional stirring till done (i.e. till water evaporates)
*you can add ½ tsp amchur powder if the tomatoes are’nt tart enough.

Roasted Curry Leaves Spice Blend
This spice powder recipe is from one my treasured cook books “660 Curries” by Raghavan Iyer. Recently I made – Dahi Elaichi Rajmah from the same book (will post it soon), this dish calls for a roasted curry leaf spice blend. This spice powder is very flavourful and aromatic; it can be used in many bhajis and stiry fries and many more recipes that ur creative mind can churn out :) . But It’s sure worth having it handy on the kitchen shelf. Here's the recipe

2 tbsp toor dal
2 tbsp urad dal
1 tsp oil
½ cup firmly packed fresh curry leaves
6-8 dry red chillies
¼ tsp turmeric powder
¼ tsp asafoetida powder

Method: Heat a teaspoon of oil in a small skillet and roast all the ingredients except turmeric powder and asafoetida. Stir fry until the leaves feel dry and crinkly, the dals turn golden brown; the chillies blacken slightly and smell pungent. This takes about 2 minutes.
Transfer the ingredients into a plate and allow it to cool. Once it is cooled completely grind it into a fine powder. Add the turmeric and asafoetida and mix well.
The ground blend will be yellow-brown with specks of green and the aroma will be sweet and complex very different from the ground whole spices.
Store in air- tight containers.

Shelf life: Up to 2 months.
NOTE: If you don’t allow the spices to cool, the ground blend will acquire unwanted moisture and make the final powder ‘cakey’
*** Many of my blogger buddies have passed on a wonderful encouraging award to me, Thanks friends I feel humbled and honoured. I'll be posting it very soon.. :)
Happy Weekend! Enjoy! Take Care :)