Tomato Saar is a spice flavoured, thin consistency tomato curry that is served hot with rice. This light and flavoured curry tastes great even as is and is soothing too. It can be served as a soup too, as it has the right amount of spicy, sour flavours with a tinge of sweetness added to it and yes not to forget the simple yet aromatic seasoning which enhances the flavour of the very simple saar. There are many versions to the recipe, I’m posting the very basic version with handy ingredients, simple yet delectable🧡. Here goes my version to an easy peasy no onion no garlic saar recipe below. The proportions mentioned are as per sourness of the tomatoes. The balance of flavours in this recipe needs to be adjusted as per individual taste buds and also depending on the sourness of the tomatoes.
- 5 juicy red tomatoes
- 1 tbsp freshly scraped coconut
- 1 tsp rice grains, rinsed and pat dried on a cloth
- 1/4th” piece of grated ginger + 1 small green chilli+ 2 sprigs of coriander leaves + 1/4th tsp cumin seeds ground to a paste
- 1 1/2 tsp ghee
- 1 green chilly (as per spice required)
- 1/8 tsp asafoetida
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 8 to 10 curry leaves
- 1/8 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 1/2 tsp kashmiri chilli powder (adjust to individual choice)
- Salt to taste
- Jaggery OR Sugar to taste (depending on the sourness of the tomatoes)
- Coriander leaves finely chopped to garnish
- Rinse the tomatoes well, make 2 slits crossways on the skin at the base of the tomato and scoop out the eye portion of the tomato (ie; where the stalk meets the fruit). Boil drinking water in a deep pan, add in the tomatoes and let it cook. As the tomatoes get cooked the bottom slits start opening up. Once the skin loosens switch off the flame. If cooked for long the tomatoes will get mushy. The tomatoes should just soften. Once cooled down to room temperature, peel the skin of the tomatoes and grind it to a smooth paste along with freshly scraped coconut and rice grains. Pass the puree through a strainer adding little water. You get approximately 2 cups of tomato puree.
- Heat a deep pan, add ghee, keep the flame on low, add cumin seeds, once they crackle add 1green chilly slit lengthwise, the ground ginger chilly cumin seeds coriander leaves paste, curry leaves, saute, then switch off the flame and immediately add asafoetida, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, mix quickly and switch on the flame and add the strained tomato puree (Switching off the flame while adding spice powders, is to ensure that the powders don’t get burnt).Add water as required to get the desired consistency depending on the sourness of tomatoes( include the water that was used to cook the tomatoes)and let it boil.
- Saar is of thin consistency but not watery. Add salt, jaggery or sugar to taste and bring it to a boil on low heat. Once it boils let it simmer a bit so that all the flavours sink into the saar.
- Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot as an accompaniment with rice and shallow fried vegetables, pulao or masale bhath and yes it also tastes great as is.
- The quantity of water to be added to the saar depends on the sourness of the tomatoes. The basic flavour of the saar is its sourness, hence add water keeping it in mind. In case the tomatoes are not sour add in a squeeze of lime OR tamarind pulp to get the perfect tang.
- Addition of ghee enhances the flavour as well as aroma of the very simple Tomato saar.
- Addition of rice grains prevents the saar from splitting due to addition of fresh coconut. The coconut and addition of rice will also help to give proper consistency to the saar as well as enhance its flavour.