Tomato Chutney, South Indian Style

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Indian tomato chutney

Spicy and tangy, you just can't go wrong with this thick chutney that pairs so well with a variety of Indian breads and crêpes. A nice dip for dried chips too. I dare say it would be lovely smothered over some fresh cooked pasta. To cool the heat, if you must, serve with a side bowl of plain yogurt or some sour cream if you are wanting to use this as a dip for dried or baked tortillas. Easy to prepare, making your own chutneys and salsa at home is far superior to store bought versions.

South Indian Tomato ChutneySouth Indian Tomato Chutney
Recipe by
Cuisine: Indian
Published on April 21, 2012

A fresh, spicy and tangy tomato chutney — can be used as a dip or sauce, or in place of salsa

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 25 to 30 minutes

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  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon channa dal or yellow split peas, well rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal without skins, well rinsed
  • 1/4 cup ghee or sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • small handful of dried curry leaves
  • 2 to 3 dried red chilies, broken into bits
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 3 sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes and finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons tamarind pulp
  • In a coffee grinder, grind together the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, peppercorns and split dal to a fine powder.

  • In a small saucepan or frying pan, heat the ghee or oil over medium heat. When hot, add the mustard seeds, curry leaves and red chilies. Stir and fry until the mixture begins to splutter and pop. Now add the onion and garlic, stir for a minute or so, and then add the ground spice and dal mixture, along with the cayenne and salt. Stir for another few minutes.

  • Next, add the tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes and tamarind, reduce the heat to low, and cover and simmer until the sauce is thickened, stirring occasionally. This should take about 20 minutes. Serve warm, at room temperature, cooled, or freeze until needed.

Makes about 1 1/2 cups

tomato chutney

More chutneys and sauces you are sure to enjoy from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Quick and Easy Tomato Chutney
Spicy Sun-Dried Tomato Paste
Mushroom Marinara Sauce
Tamarind Chutney


Anonymous said...

I have fresh curry leaves readily available in my local Indian shops. Do the dried leaves impart a special quality, or can the fresh one's be used instead?

Dave in Virginia

Lisa Turner said...

You certainly can use fresh curry leaves. I can get fresh ones too, but it is not always convenient for me to get to the Indian grocery store, so I always have dried ones on hand. I would say that using fresh ones are probably best.