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Tomato Rice/Thakkali Pongal

Tomato Rice/Thakkali Pongal

Ask any sourashtrian their favorite food. Thakkali Pongal, as it is called will top the poll.  It is such a simple flavorful meal accompanied by simple raita or kurma.  

Jeera Samba Rice- 2 cups
Oil- 6 tbsp
Ghee-1 tsp
Tomato- 5 to 6 medium size
Onion- 1
Mint and coriander- a handful
Ginger garlic paste- 1 tbsp
Green Chillies- 4
Red Chilly Powder- 1 tbsp or more to suit the taste
Whole spices- 5 cloves ,1 cardamom pod, 1 tsp of fennel seeds, 1" cinnamon stick
salt- to taste

Heat Oil and ghee in a pressure pan, add whole spices, then saute onion till translucent followed by ginger garlic green chilies, mint and then add finely chopped tomatoes( pulse it if you cannot chop very fine), salt and chilli powder. Saute till the oil separates. Check the taste. Add water 1:2. Make sure you account the onion tomato gravy in this measurement. Let it come to a rolling boil. Add rice to it. ( I soak the rice for 15 mts and drain).  Let it come to a boil. Close the pressure cooker with the weight on and put the stove on the lowest heat setting so that the pressure created inside is not let out for 15 mts. 
Let the pressure drop on its own, garnish it with coriander leaves. 


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Steps of Vada, Sambhar vada and Dahi wada -South Indian style

Soak the whole urad dal- 1 cup for 1 hour in the fridge. Grind in the wet grinder adding 2 red chillies adding the cold water little by little say in a spoon, do not add at once. We need thick batter. Add 1 red onion finely chopped, 2 green chillies, curry leaves, pepper corns-1 tsp, ginger grated 1 tsp, salt, hing(asafoetida). This is how it looks..

Then Heat oil in a pan and start deep frying the vada. Dilute Sambhar with hot water and dilute curd with water add salt.  Soak the fried vada in Diluted Sambhar and Diluted curd for 15 to 20 mts. This is to make the vada absorb sambhar and curd and remove excess oil. Then drop them in Sambhar and curd respectively.
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