South Indian Salsa

A delicious accompaniment also known as Gostu, Gotsu, Gojju or Pico de Gallo with a twist!

By Ashok Vasudevan

Serves 4  | Prep time 10 minutes |  Cook time: 20 minutes

  • 2 RipeTomatoes (medium sized)
  • 1 Large Onion
  • 3 oz. Tomato paste (Natural or Organic)
  • 1 teaspoon Ivory Lentil or Urad Dal (split) 
  • ¼  cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 2 green chilles (washed and deseeded)
  • 1 teaspoon Ginger (finely chopped)
  • ½  teaspoon whole cumin 
  • 1 tablespoons Olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 - 10 Curry Leaves 
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 pinch Hing (Asafoetida)
Mis en place

This came out really well!!

  • Place the 2 tomatoes in a microwave safe dish. Add 1 glass of water (8 oz)  water and zap for 5 minutes. (Before microwaving tomatoes, remember to make a small slice with a knife in each tomato. This will hasten cooking and prevent the tomato from bursting inside the microwave!)   
  • If you prefer not to use the microwave, go ahead and follow the same instructions but cook on stove top for about 10 minutes until the whole tomatoes get really soft and the skin begins to separate from the fruit
  • Finely chop onion, ginger, cilantro, green chilles and set aside.
  • Once the tomatoes are cooked,  peel the skin.  Exercise caution since the tomatoes will be piping hot and steaming. Once you lose the skin, use a whisk or a masher and crush the tomatoes in the water in which it boiled. But let it remain slightly chunky. This will lend body to the salsa.  
  • Add 1 Tbsp olive oil in sauce pan and place on medium heat.  When the oil is hot add  mustard seeds and cumin. In a few seconds the mustard seeds will pop. Add ginger, green chillies, curry leaves, hing and salt and allow the spices & condiments to blend for ½ minute or so.   
  • Add onions and sauté in medium heat for about 2 minutes. Make sure the onions do not turn color but just become a little translucent. 
  • Now, add the boiled, crushed tomatoes (with the water) to the sauce pan. 
  • Now add ½ can of the tomato paste (3 oz) to the sauce pan. 
  • Add 1 cup of water (about 8 oz) and mix well. Let the whole stew cook in low heat for 10 minutes.  You know you are done when it blends well and becomes thick as a pasta sauce.  
  • Remove from flame, add lime juice and garnish with cilantro leaves.  
  • The is a perfect accompaniment for Idlis, Dosas, Pongal, and even Oatmeal crepes!  Use this imaginatively and share with us what you did
Nutrition: Serving size: 1 cup

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