Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Thakkali Thokku - Tomato Pickle

Thakkali Thokku (a kind of tomato pickle) is a family favourite. It differs from chutney where tomatoes are sauted till cooked and then made to a paste. For a thokku, the tomatoes are cooked thru till most of the water is drained.

Every time we visit India, my Mother in Law makes us this huge jar full of thokku. It will be brought here and we would devour it for about a month. Somehow this was something she made and not something I ever tried. Since making it a few weeks ago, I have already made it a couple more times. We all love it at home, including my little one. So my version is pretty mild. You can make it spicy if you like it that way.

Be warned that a Kilo (10 medium) tomatoes will only fetch you a jam jar full of pickle. So if you want loads, do double or triple the quantity. When I get from India, it is a huge jar. Now I realize my MIL must be easily processing about 5-6 Kg of tomato!


Tomato 10 medium (1Kg)
Sesame Oil (see below) 6 tbsp
Mustard 1 tsp
Fenugreek Seeds 1/2 tsp
Curry Leaves 1 sprig
Hing generous pinch
Kashmiri Chilli Powder 3 tsp (for mild thokku)
Salt to taste (I used a little less than 1 tsp)

Method of Preparation

1. Pulse the tomatoes in a food processor or finely chop them.

2. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan. Add mustard seeds.

3. When it sputters, add fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and hing.

4. When it sizzles, add tomatoes.

5. Cook till the water drains from the tomatoes and oil starts to ooze. Initially the water will splash. So you can cover and cook.

6. Keep stirring well towards the end.

7. Cool and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Use a clean dry spoon to take the thokku every time.

Notes about Oil

* Any oil will work. But Sesame Oil/Gingely Oil (Nalla Ennai) especially Idayam Nallannai enhances the taste like none other can!

* You can use more or less oil as per your taste and dietary requirement. The  6tbsp I used was slightly above average and tasted perfect. Even 3-4 tbsp should work.


  1. Its my favorite for dosas or idlis. Nice

  2. nice color, looks so delicious!

  3. Love this thokku, looks very delicious and love the mini idlis too!

  4. I make it the same way too Roshni. The kutti idli click with the thokku is too good. I have never had it with mini ones and after seeing wish to eat it too.