Tamatar Shorba, Mughlai-style Indian Tomato Soup

Mallika Basu - Tamatar Shorba, Mughlai-style Indian Tomato Soup

Posted 13th November 2008

I’ve been outed. Shortly after the Frankfurt book fair, an Indian magazine announced my other big news.

My mad ramblings, irreverent rants and quick recipes are to be published into a lifestyle/narrative cookbook by HarperCollins titled “Miss Masala”.

Of course this being journalism, they got two out of three facts wrong. I write a Quick Indian Cooking food blog. True. I live in the US. False. I am the obese spoon-wielding aunty in a cotton sari depicted by the resident cartoonist. Gross misrepresentation!

Still, it’s far better than the tepid response from some of my family members. Gran and dad take it in turns to claim I inherited the skill from them. On his recent trip, dad responded disbelievingly at the meal I cooked for him. And even asked me if I knew what “blanching” meant.

Thank god I have publishing glory to look forward to. Even though the book won’t hit the shops until March 2010. Watch this space.

In the meantime, here’s a Tamatar Shorba or Mughlai-style Indian tomato soup recipe requested by one of my readers. I’ll spare you too much sentimentality, but I wouldn’t be here without you lot, yadi yadi yada…  Just please start saving to buy my book!

Feeds 2:

  • 10 medium tomatoes (about 1 kg)
  • 1 tsp whole cumin
  • Handful of fresh coriander
  • 2 fat garlic cloves
  • 1 red finger chilli
  • Half tsp Kasoori methi or dry fenugreek
  • 2 teaspoons brown dememera sugar
  • 1 tsp sunflower oil
  • Salt to taste

Wash, slice the tops off and quarter the tomatoes. Slice the garlic.

In a medium-sized pot, bring the oil to heat over a high flame. When it’s hot, add the cumin and garlic and fry for a few seconds until the garlic browns slightly.

Then mix in the tomatoes, sugar, chilli and coriander. Cook on a high flame, stirring every two minutes, for about 10 until the tomatoes disintegrate. In the meantime, soak the kasoori methi in a tiny cup with two tablespoons of hot water. This will help balance the sweet and spicy soup with its bitterness.

Then take the pan off the heat for a few seconds, stir in the methi and go in with a hand blender to puree all the contents. If you don’t have a hand blender, just wait for the contents to cool a bit and transfer them to a larger blender. If you don’t have any blenders, just pass the contents through a sieve or colander.

Add salt to taste and enjoy piping hot.

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