If you love tomatoes you will love this curry. I got perfectly ripe tomatoes from the farmer's market this week. I knew I was in for a treat the moment I cut those tomatoes. The aroma of perfectly sun ripened tomatoes was divine. I felt that I should not let these beauties down. I should cook them to evoke the same reaction in my family members that I had when I cut into them. I was in the mood for some spicy Indian food, so I made stuffed tomato curry. Tomatoes are hollowed out and filled with a curried potato mix. They are then baked in the oven till the tomatoes get slightly tender. In this process the flavor of those tomatoes gets concentrated and they taste amazing. These tomatoes had very low acidity and were sweet and juicy. I used the tops and the scooped out pulp in the gravy. No part gets wasted. The gravy is a creamy cashew onion tomato gravy with fresh roasted spices.
Forewarning: This dish is a labor of love. It is time consuming but I promise you, the results will be worth it.
For the potato filling:
Potatoes - 3 red potatoes
Onion - 1 medium yellow onion diced small
Raw cashews - 10 coarsely chopped
Garlic - 2 pods
Green chilli - 1 sliced small (use as per taste)
Garam masala - 1/4 tsp
cumin seeds - 1/4 tsp
Salt as per taste
Boil or microwave the potatoes. Peel and mash them coarsely.
Cut an onion in a fine dice. Finely chop garlic. Coarsely chop cashews into small pieces. Finely chop green chilli.
Take a pan and add 2 tbsp of oil.
Add cumin seeds, once they sizzle add cashews, garlic and green chilli.
Once the cashews are golden, add onions and fry till golden brown.
Add the mashed potatoes, turmeric and salt to taste.
Mix well. Add garam masala and mix.
Taste and adjust seasoning.
Spread on a flat dish to cool quickly.
For the gravy:
Tomatoes - the tops and scooped out pulp chopped up
Yellow onion - 1 large or 2 medium coarsely chopped
Raw cashews - 1/4 cup soaked for 30 minutes
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp chopped
Garlic - 2 pods chopped
Kashmiri or Byadgi chilli - 1 (use as per taste)
Coriander/ dhania seeds - 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds/jeera - 1 tsp
Whole black pepper - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon stick - 1 inch piece coarsely crushed
Cardamom/ elaichi - 2 pods
Dry bay leaf - 1
Salt to taste
Chop onions, the scooped out parts of tomato, ginger and garlic.
Take 2 tbsp oil in a pan, when it is warm, add ginger and garlic, saute till they are aromatic, then add onion and cashews and saute till onions are lightly golden. Add the chopped up tomatoes and cook till they are soft and don't smell raw.
In a separate small pan, add all the dry spices (Kashmiri or Byadgi chill, coriander, cumin, black pepper , cinnamon stick and cardamom ) and roast till aromatic.
Crush coarsely in a mortar pestle or coffee (spice) grinder.
Add them to the cooked onion cashew tomato mixture.
Add turmeric and salt to taste.
When cooled, puree it in a blender.
Take a saute pan with a tbsp of oil and add a bay leaf and add the puree. Cook for a couple of minutes and add some milk ( I used 2%, you could also use whole milk but not fat free) to thin it out to a thick pouring consistency. If it is already a little thin, you could just add some (2 tbsp) heavy whipping cream ( malai) to the puree.
I do not like to make the gravy very heavy, since I already added cashews, it creates a creamy rich taste, I did not add cream, I added milk instead. You could add cream for a rich indulgent gravy.
Just look at these beauties! Ripe and gorgeous.
For the tomatoes:
Salt to taste
Plain bread crumbs - 1/3 cup
Oil - 1 tbsp.
Pre heat oven to 400F.
Place the hollowed out tomatoes on a baking sheet.
Sprinkle some salt on the inside of the tomato.
Place the potato filling inside each tomato.
Mix a third of a cup of plain bread crumbs with a tbsp of oil.
Place the bread crumb oil mix on each tomato.
The bread crumbs are purely optional, I just like the crispiness they add to the dish.
Place in oven for 15 minutes. The tomatoes should look slightly soft. Baking time may vary based on oven. Please keep an eye on them after 12 minutes. If left for too long, they might flop down and become mushy and not hold their shape.
The grand finale:
When ready to serve, place some grave in the dish to create a bed for the tomatoes to sit on.
Place the tomatoes on the gravy.
Serve with steamed rice or roti. I prefer rice for this dish.
This dish is my pride and absolute joy!