Tomato thokku, a spicy condiment made of fresh tomatoes and red chilies. This no onion, no garlic tomato relish, a must have condiment in the pantry. It pairs well with idly, dosa and can also be enjoyed mixed with rice too.
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What is Thokku?
Thokku is a Tamil name given to a spicy relish. Today's recipe is Thakkali thokku, a relish made from juicy, plumpy tomatoes. Tomato is called 'Thakkali' in Tamil.
This no garlic tomato condiment takes about 40-45 minutes to put together and has a longer shelf life. This stays good on the kitchen counter 2-3 days and more than 15 days in the refrigerator. Just store it in a clean glass jar and use a clean spoon.
This delish thokku pairs well with idly, dosa, upma. It can also be mixed with steaming hot rice and made into Thakkali Rice | Instant Tomato Rice.
Thokku can be made with vegetables, fresh herbs, some times with fruits too. Here is a list of thokku varieties for you to give it a try.
- Mango thokku, spicy relish made of raw mangoes.
- Kothamalli thokku, spicy relish made of fresh coriander leaves
- Pudina thokku, condiment made of fresh mint leaves
- Apple thokku, spicy relish made of fresh apples.
- Cranberry thokku, relish made of cranberries.
Tomato Thokku | Spicy Tomato Relish
Today's recipe of no onion, no garlic, tomato thokku, is my mom's trade-mark recipe. She makes it often, and in particular when we get plump, juicy tomatoes , that too for half the price during season.
This delish thakkali thokku is a must when we travel. Amma packs it with idly or chapati, in a banana leaf, interleaved with this amazing relish. The aroma that wafts when we open a pack of thokku, is incredible. It will make everyone's mouth water and your stomach will start secreting digestive juices to welcome the meal.
- Tomatoes : Pick, plump and juicy tomatoes.
- Spices : Round red chillies along with a small amount of coriander seeds and fenugreek seeds are roasted and ground. This spice powder this used to flavor the thokku.
- Tempering: Good amount of gingely oil, along with regular Indian tempering ingredients like mustard seeds and hing are used. Oil is the preservative here for the thokku, it is cooked until the oil separates and floats on top. So use a good quality, preferably cold pressed oil.
Please check recipe card below for exact measurements of each ingredient used and also for the detailed instructions
- The first step is to peel the tomatoes. This step is optional. I have made this thokku both with and without the skin of the tomatoes.
- If you decide to peel the skin of the tomatoes. Bring around 8-10 cups of water to a boil. Turn off the heat, add the tomatoes to this and let it sit for 30 minutes.
- Scoop out the tomatoes, let it rest for a while. When it is warm to touch. Peel the skin of the tomatoes. Blend them to a smooth liquid.
- While the tomatoes are resting, heat a small tadka pan, add 1 teaspoon of oil and roast te coriander seeds, methi seeds to golden brown. Turn off the heat, to the hot pan add the red chilies and let it get toasty in the residue heat. Let this cool completely, then grind this to a powder.
- In a heavy bottom pan, heat oil, splutter mustard seeds, hing and curry leaves. Add the pureed tomatoes. Add turmeric powder to this and let it come to a boil.
- Now add the freshly ground masala powder and salt to this. Mix well. Let this cook in a medium flame, until all the liquid gets absorbed and oil separates on top.
- The thokku will start spluttering out as it thickens, so take care to keep the flame low and cover it with a splatter guard.
- Once done, take it off the heat. Let it cool down completely. Store the thokku in a clean glass jar in the refrigerator. Remember to use clean spoon for the tomato relish.
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Tomato Thokku | Spicy Tomato Relish | No Onion, No Garlic
- Indian style mixie or any heavy blender
- 2 kilogram ripened tomatoes about 20 medium sized tomatoes
- 2 teaspoon Salt to taste
- ¾ cup gingely oil
- 1.5 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon hing/asafoetida
Roast n grind
- 2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- ½ teaspoon methi/fenugreek seeds
- 25 red chillies round variety
- The first step is to peel the skin of tomatoes. This step is optional. I have made this thokku both ways tomatoes with skin and tomatoes without skin. If you decide to peel the skin, proceed to next step if you chose to skip, blend the tomatoes directly.
To peel the skin of the tomatoes
- Wash the tomatoes well with water. In a big pot, bring 8 -10 cups of water to a boil. Add the tomatoes to the water and take it off the stove.
- Keep it covered for 30 minutes. I used my 8 liters cooker vessel for this. The water level should be well above the tomatoes.
- After the given time, using a ladle, scoop the tomatoes out of the hot water. Be careful, since the water would be very hot.
- Let the tomatoes rest for while, then peel the skin of the tomatoes. Take the peeled tomatoes in a blender and blend until smooth. I used my hand blender and blended it straight in the vessel itself.
Make the Spice powder
- In a small tadka pan, dry roast the ingredients given under "roast n grind" and keep aside to cool. When it is cool enough to grind, take it in the small jar of your mixie and grind it to powder. Keep aside until use.
Let us make the thokku
- Heat a heavy bottom pan, add oil given under "Tempering", splutter mustard seeds, add hing, turmeric powder.
- Now slowly add the pureed tomatoes to this tadka. Be careful, the liquid might splutter out.
- Mix well. Reduce the flame to medium and let it cook. When it comes to a boil, add the ground powder and salt. Mix well.
- Let this cook until the liquid is absorbed completely and oil separates on top. Takes about 40-50 minutes for the above quantity.
- Once done, the thokku/preserve will come away from the sides of the pan and move along with the laddle as you mix it.
- Take it off the stove and let it cool completely. Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.
- An apt combination for idly/dosa/chapathi, that too while travelling this preseve stays good for a day or two in room temperature. But remember to use a clean and dry spoon always. Stays well for weeks, while refrigerated.
I m not a Doctor or a Nutritionist The Nutrition information provided above comes from the plugin and is only an estimate.
wow.. this is awesome... bookmarked!
Now i miss my amma's thokku, my mouth is just watering here.
lovely variations. L:oved the click too
versatile thokku and the first click is too tempting
Tasty n tangy thoku, nice clicks...
I luv the tradition way of making tomato thokku,luvly color.
yum delicious finger licking tomato thokku.
Wow this looks very tasty and tempting... Awesome clicks....
tasty, tangy thokku.. Always been in my to do list. Bookmarked.