Tomato thokku is a traditional South Indian condiment with ripe tomatoes, spices, and herbs. Tomato Thokku in Tamil is known as Thakkali Thokku. It is a popular side dish in many South Indian households and is typically served with rice, chapati, idli, dosa, or other Indian bread.
This no onion, no garlic Tomato thokku is a versatile condiment that can be used as a spread on sandwiches, wraps, and burgers or as a dip for chips and crackers. It is also delicious when used as a topping for pizza or added to scrambled eggs for a flavorful twist.
Why do people love Tomato Thokku
People love tomato thokku for several reasons. Firstly, it has a delicious taste and flavour from the combination of ripe tomatoes, spices, and herbs. The spicy, tangy, and slightly sweet taste of tomato thokku makes it a versatile condiment paired with various dishes, such as rice, bread, and snacks.
Tomato Pickle is easy to make and requires minimal ingredients. It is a great way to use ripe tomatoes and can be prepared in large batches and stored in the refrigerator for later use.
Tomato thokku is a popular and traditional South Indian condiment passed down through generations. It is a staple in many South Indian households and is a beloved part of the region’s cuisine and culture. Its popularity has spread beyond South India, and today it is enjoyed by people worldwide.
Tomatoes are extremely versatile. I personally prefer making this thokku often because tomatoes are always available in the market. We don’t need to wait for a particular season to stock up on tomatoes.
Also, tomatoes can be easy when it comes to cooking. They get cooked quickly, which makes the recipe very simple. Tomato thokku is a very travel-friendly recipe as well. As a child, I often travelled on trains for vacations. Tomato thokku and rotis or idlis were always there to keep us company during those train journeys. To date, I love spreading some generous thokku on rotis, rolling them up and eating.
About my Tomato Thokku recipe
There are different thokku / pickle varieties that we use in Tamil Nadu. Tomato thokku is one of the easiest out there! This is one thokku that is available in my refrigerator almost throughout the year! When I am in no mood to make a chutney or sambar, this thokku saves my day!
For this thokku, we cook the tomatoes until mushy and grind them with tamarind. Then we cook it again in some sesame oil along with the required spices. We cook the tomatoes till they reach the thokku/pickle consistency. Can it get any easier?
While there are many variations, this is a quick recipe from my grandmother’s kitchen. She is my cooking idol. I love her style of cooking and have grown up eating her dishes. Today, when I write recipes, my first choice is to write about my grandmother’s cooking style! Nothing can come close to it. She makes cooking look like a breeze. She doesn’t believe in spending the whole day in the kitchen. Her recipes are short but delicious. She makes a feast in less than an hour.
How to Store Thakkali Thokku
Tomato thokku stays good at room temperature for around five days. When refrigerated, it lasts for nearly two months. But I am sure the thokku will get over by then, and you will prepare the next batch!
It is essential to store the thokku in an airtight container and keep it refrigerated. Always use a dry, clean spoon while handling the thokku. This ensures it remains fresh and suitable for a more extended period.
Best ways to serve Tomato Thokku
Tomato thokku is a versatile condiment that can be served with a wide range of dishes. Here are some popular ways to serve tomato thokku:
- With Rice: Tomato thokku is often served with steamed rice. Simply mix a spoonful of tomato thokku with hot rice and enjoy the delicious flavors.
- With Indian bread: Tomato thokku goes well with a variety of Indian bread such as chapati, paratha, or naan. Spread some tomato thokku on the bread and roll it up for a quick and tasty snack.
- With Idli, Dosa, and Curd Rice: This delicious thakkali thokku is a great side dish for Idli, Dosa and Curd Rice.
- With Snacks: This Pickle can also be served as a dip for snacks such as samosas, pakoras, or chips. It adds a spicy and tangy flavour to these snacks.
- With Sandwiches and Wraps: Tomato thokku can be used as a spread for sandwiches and wraps. It adds a burst of flavor and makes for a great vegetarian or vegan option.
- With Eggs: Tomato thokku can be used as a topping for scrambled eggs or omelets. It adds a delicious and spicy twist to this breakfast classic.
- Pizza: It can be used as a topping for pizza instead of traditional tomato sauce. It adds a unique flavour and pairs well with a variety of toppings.
How to make Tomato Tholkku
First, roughly chop the tomatoes.
In a pan, add oil. Once hot, add the tomatoes. Close the pan and cook till the tomatoes turn soft. Add gooseberry-sized tamarind and cook till tomatoes and tamarind turn entirely mushy.
Switch off. Cool down to room temperature and grind it to a fine paste. In the same pan, add sesame oil. Once hot, add the tomato tamarind puree. Keep on medium heat and add salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder, and Kashmiri chilli powder. Stir well. Close and cook for 5 minutes.
Keep opening in between and give a stir so that the thakkali thokku doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
Once the tomato thokku starts becoming thick, add jaggery. Mix well and keep cooking. The tomato thokku should not stick to the sides of the pan and should come together. That’s the indication that the thokku is done.
Switch off. In another pan, add sesame oil. Once hot, add mustard and fenugreek seeds. As soon as the mustard starts spluttering, add it to the thokku and give it a mix.
Once it cools to room temperature, store the homemade Thakkali thokku in an air-tight container and refrigerate. Use a clean spoon to serve.
Other recipes you may like
Tomato Thokku | Easy Thakkali Thokku
- 500 gms Tomato
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
- Salt as needed
- 1 tbsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
- Tamarind small gooseberry sized
- 1 tsp Jaggery
- 3 tbsp Sesame oil + 1 tsp to cook the tomatoes and tamarind
- 2 tsp Sesame Oil
- 1 tsp Mustard seeds
- 1/4 tsp Fenugreek seeds
- Chop the tomatoes into pieces. In a pan, add 1 tsp of oil. Once hot, add the tomatoes. Close the pan and cook till the tomatoes turn soft. Add gooseberry-sized tamarind and cook till tomatoes and tamarind turn entirely mushy.
- Switch off. Let the mixture cool to room temperature and grind it to a fine paste. In the same pan, add 3 tbsp of sesame oil. Once hot, add the tomato tamarind puree. Keep on medium heat and add salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder, and Kashmiri chilli powder. Stir well. Close and cook for 5 minutes.
- Keep opening in between and give a stir so that the thakkali thokku doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Once the tomato thokku starts becoming thick, add jaggery. Mix well and keep cooking. The tomato thokku should not stick to the sides of the pan and should come together. That's the indication that the thokku is done.
- Switch off. In another pan, add sesame oil. Once hot, add mustard and fenugreek seeds. As soon as the mustard starts spluttering, add it to the thokku and give it a mix.
- Once it cools to room temperature, store the homemade Tomato Thokku in an air-tight container and refrigerate. Use a clean spoon to serve.