Naatu tomato costs Rs. 5 a kilo and the apple tomato is between Rs. 8 and Rs. 9. So what are we waiting for? Here are some recipes that are easy, tasty and healthy

Tomato Juice

Ingredients

Tomatoes: 5-6 firm and red ones

Sugar: To taste

Lemon: 2 medium

Salt: A pinch

Pepper: Optional

Method

Wash the tomatoes well. Chop them up roughly and put them into a mixie with sugar to taste. Grind, dilute with water and strain the skin and pips out. Squeeze in the juice of lemon. Further dilute to the consistency you want. Taste and adjust sugar and lemon accordingly. Pour into transparent glasses, because it is a very pretty colour and has to be shown off! Garnish with a leaf or two of fresh mint and freshly ground pepper. You should get at least five glasses of juice with this quantity, depending on the thickness.

Tomato Soup

Ingredients

Onions (roughly chopped): 2 or 3

Apple tomatoes (roughly chopped): 5 or 6

Carrot (chopped): 1

Butter/ghee/olive oil: A tbsp

Salt and pepper: To taste

Milk/cream: To taste

Method

Take a teaspoonful of butter in a pressure cooker. Once it is hot enough, add the onions and sauté till they are translucent. Add the tomatoes, chopped carrot and pressure cook for a whistle. Once the pressure comes down, grind the tomatoes, onion and carrots. Strain to take the seeds and skin out. Skip this step if you are not particular. Add salt and pepper to taste. Just before serving, add a dash of milk to the soup or a swirl of cream. You can serve fingers of toast with it.

If you want to make the soup a complete meal, before cooking it, add a fistful of yellow moong dal or pink masur dal to it. It thickens the soup and adds more nutrients. If you want that deep red colour for your soup, squeeze some beetroot juice into it, that will turn your soup from an orange to a vibrant red.

Tomato chutney (pulikaachal)

Ingredients

Tomatoes (naatu or apple - chopped roughly): 1 kg

Red chillies: 4 to 5 or more

Mustard: 1 tsp

Asafoetida: A pinch

Jaggery: To taste. Dilute the jaggery in little water and strain to take any grit out

Curry leaves: A sprig or two

Oil: 3- 4 tbsp. Preferably gingelly oil.

Method

Heat oil in a kadai. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves. Add broken red chillies and curry leaves. Add the tomatoes, lower the flame and cook till the tomatoes are reduced. Add the jaggery and cook the chutney down. Add salt to taste. Cool and bottle (it should keep for a few days in the fridge).

The chutney is perfect to add to plain rice or be used as a spread on toast or as a filling in a roti.

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