Thursday, September 3, 2009

Green Tomatoes - A Sweet and Sour Combo

I'm back from another beautiful vacation! We were up in the Canadian Rocky mountains last week... This is one of those places with exceptional beauty! The natural beauty of those gorgeous glaciers, roaring waterfalls and snowcapped peaks are a treat for the eyes and mind. We took a train ride for 2 days and then drove from Jasper to Banff in Alberta, Canada. This scenic drive is suppose to be one of the top 5 scenic drives in the world! Its a must-take drive.

Well, here I am again after another short break and pretty much all geared up to get back on track with my old routine. After a long time, our lives seem to be back to normal. Its that time of the year again! Fall is just around the corner. Bright and early tuesday morning next week, my daughter will start the new school year! As usual, I still don't quite feel ready for it this year too. Need to setup her room and desk to get her ready for school. Looks like as usual she is quite excited and seems to be all set for her school already!

My routine won't be great for sure, it doesn't allow for a lot of loafing. Waking up at 6 am! I have to act being cheerful and pleasant in order to get my daughter up and ready to school while I am barely functioning. Next is making the lunch box.. Aah, the pain of deciding what to make... is it peanutbutter-jelly, noodles, or pasta.. or... this.. that.. and finally ending-up with whatever I grab from my fridge first. Then comes my commute - mostly glued to my bluetooth and attending office meetings. And what about the homework time and dinner time? aah.. this whole dreaded back-to-school fiasco! I'm not that enthusiastic about it. I know within weeks we'll settle down, but until then its important for me to keep my sanity!

Well, with my parents departure, I'm back in the kitchen all by myself -- that means, I'm back to my old habits of debating everyday what to cook for dinner, recalling my handy quick and easy recipes, managing with leftovers etc. Ever since we came back from vacation, I'm taking it easy by shopping only for necessary items like milk and bread. I'm barely yet to my regular cooking routine. During my regular hunt in my fridge for dinner ideas, I found these raw tomatoes that my friend had given me a couple of weeks back. She has a huge vegetable patch in her backyard with plenty of tomatoes and chillies! I specifically had asked for green raw tomatoes from her to make this special vegetable dish that I really enjoy. This is another of those recipes I tasted from my friend's lunch box and got curious to try it out myself. That special sour and sweet combination goes very well with chapathis and I actually do enjoy this with rice too.

I know you all should be wondering why does it look red when made with green tomatoes. Adding chilli powder and garam masala changes the color of the dish, and I also do avoid turmeric. I also have to admit that I really don't know the difference between these raw green tomatoes and Tomatillos. They look the same to me, but tomatillos taste a bit more sour to me. I tried this same recipe with tomatillos a couple of times, but came out way too sour! So, I just stick on to these raw tomotoes and end up preparing this dish only in summer. If any one can help me out with the difference between these two vegetables, that will be great!

Ingredients :
  • Green Tomatoes - 5 numbers (medium sized)
  • Chilli powder - 1 tsp
  • Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
  • Jaggery - 1 tbsp
  • Peanut Powder (Crushed peanuts) - 2 to 3 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  • Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
  • Corriander leaves - for garnishing
  • Wash and chop the green tomatoes as shown in the picture.
  • Heat some oil in a pan, and season with mustard and cumin seeds.
  • Then add these tomatoes and fry for a few mins.
  • Add chillipowder, garam masala and some salt and mix well. Cover it for atleast 10 mins or until the tomatoes become soft. You will have to saute the mixture and mash the tomatoes a little bit using spatula a couple of times.
  • When its just about ready add the jaggery and fry until its completely dissolved with the vegetable.
  • Finally add the peanut powder, mix well and remove from heat.
  • Garnish with corriander leaves.
Awesome side dish for rotis!