Recipe: Tomato Chutney

a spicy, traditional accompaniment for summer picnics

Summer is nearly fading now, and the fresh tomato crop from your garden may be gone soon - but here is a quick and easy tomato chutney that will let you enjoy a different dimension of the red fruit, as a side to savory dishes. It pairs great with Dosa or paratha's. This chutney is also travel-friendly and survives a few hours without refrigeration ... making it perfect for your next picnic basket.

Spicy Tomato Chutney

Makes: Eight servings; 50 calories ea. Diet: Vegan, Gluten-free Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time, Ease: Less than 20 minutes, Easy


2 tsp oil 1 tsp black mustard seeds ½ tsp fenugreek seeds 1 medium onion, finely diced 2-3 garlic cloves, minced 10 fresh curry leaves 1-2 tsp cayenne pepper powder 1 cup tomato puree 1 tbsp tamarind paste concentrate 1 tsp sugar Salt, to taste Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


Heat the oil in a heavy-bottom saucepan. Add the mustard and fenugreek seeds to the hot oil. As the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the diced onion and stir until soft and golden. Add the minced garlic and curry leaves, and stir. Cook this mixture for 1-2 minutes on medium-low until the garlic is cooked but not brown. Add the cayenne pepper powder and stir; follow up with tomato puree and tamarind paste. Increase the heat to medium and bring to a boil, constantly stirring and allowing the water content to evaporate. Season with sugar and salt, and let cool. Transfer to a glass container with a good seal such as a Mason® jar, and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Use a clean, dry spoon to extract only the amount you will use. Garnish with cilantro while serving. When refrigerated, this chutney keeps well for 3-4 days.


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Nandita Godbole

Once a botanist & landscape architect.

Now a personal chef & author, an artist, graphic designer, blogger & poet. 


Loves freshly brewed chai, the crisp salty ocean breeze, watching monsoon rains & walking barefoot through cold mountain streams. 


Believes in the strength, positivity of the human spirit. Is spiritual but not a fanatic. 


Mom of one. Two, if she counts her husband.