I was so confused as to what I should name this post. Most of us in India are familiar with Tomato rice. I decided to swap the Rice with quinoa, but calling it Tomato Quinoa sounded so weird. Hence I decided to go with Tomato Rice- but with Quinoa.
Tomato Rice is a fairly simple and popular South Indian dish. You don’t need any Indian Curry or side dish to go with this. Actually scratch that, try it with poppadum’s, they taste great together. This is a dish that is usually made in our household in January when we go on a vegetarian diet for a month. For a change I decided to replace the rice with quinoa and it tasted just as good.
Flash Back time
I have a back story to share and it has almost nothing to do with tomato Rice… well almost nothing to do with Tomato rice and you’ll know what I mean. Seventeen years ago (man do I feel old now) we were a group of 4 girls in school and we called ourselves SMAG (acronym of our names and yes I am S). No matter how ridiculous it may sound right now, SMAG was probably on my list of “Best School memories”. It’s like you know that poofy dress which you wore as a little girl, pictures of which will make you cringe right now. Well, hey that was the IN thing back then. So everything had its place and moment in its own timeline.
Before I go ahead, word of warning. I have random thoughts just flowing out of mind right now and I’m warning you there’ll be no continuity in my story telling. I’m writing exactly what I am thinking.
So one weekend, we had a sleepover at G’s and man so much happened over that weekend. Even as I write, I can picture her home, the mountain behind her home, the entrance and the living room, her huge kitchen; it’s all playing like a movie in my head… in sepia mode. From an Idly eating contest (I ate 10) to movie marathons to knowing that a boy liked me to crazy story telling; it was an awesome weekend. G’s mum made the best Onion chutney (I think it was onion chutney) which actually helped me down those 10 Idly’s. That chutney was DA BOMB. I would eagerly wait for those days when G got idly or dosa and that onion chutney in her lunch box. We’d pounce of her lunch box like hungry wolves.
In SMAG, M and G were vegetarians, and when I was little I NEEDED some sort of Non-vegetarian component in every mean I ate. So of course eating 3 vegetarian meals at G’s place was a big deal for me and her mum made sure I did not miss my meat that day. G if you are reading this, I enjoyed every moment and every meal.
So where’s tomato rice in this story; well, G’s mum made it for lunch that weekend… (Straight face). Yup, that is the only part Tomato rice played in the story. THE END. Abrupt end to story.
The creative writing juices are not flowing anymore and so I end this right here. Now go make yourself some Tomato Rice or Tomato Quinoa or whatever you want to call this and enjoy it. The name does not matter but I can assure you it tastes great.
PS. I clicked these pictures long before I attended the Food photography workshop. The pictures are atrocious and are a perfect example of how you should NOT style your food pictures, but I didn’t want it to stop me from sharing the recipe anyway.
- 1 cup quinoa, cooked
- 1 Tsp Urad dal
- 1 Tsp Chana Dal
- 1 tsp Mustard seeds
- 1-2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
- 2-3 Dried Red Chilli, chopped
- 8-10 Curry Leaves
- Garlic 3-4 cloves, Chopped
- ½ inch Ginger, Chopped
- 2 large onion, Sliced
- 2-3 Tomatoes, Chopped
- ½ Tbsp Coriander Powder
- 1 Tbsp Red Chilli powder
- ½ tsp Garam masala powder
- Salt, to taste
- Small bunch of coriander leaves, chopped
- Heat oil in the pan and add mustard, urad dal, chana dal fry it little golden color.
- Add dried red chili, curry leaves and fry it for 30 sec.
- Now add the ginger and garlic and sauté till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away.
- You are then ready to add the sliced onions. Fry well and then add the finely chopped tomatoes. Sauté the tomatoes. Cook until soft and pulpy with oil releasing from the sides.
- Now add in all the remaining ground spices, salt and fry well. Make sure the paste is a thick “gravy-ish” consistency.
- Mix the quinoa and the Tomato paste. Serve in a bowl and garnish with coriander leaves.