An alternative to an old fashioned tomato sauce, this spicy aromatic combination of ripe tomatoes infused with curry leaves and traditional South Asian pickle spices, such as nigella (onion) seeds, fenugreek seeds, and aniseed, creates the ultimate Asian tomato ketchup. Based on a old family recipe (which is much more complicated and painstaking), I have created a simple recipe ready for adorning hot dogs, burgers, sandwiches, and even dressing cucumber or cabbage salads. Traditionally we eat this at room temperature with rice, a curry and some lentil daal. Cover and keep in fridge and it can last up to 5 days. —Sumayya Usmani
1 1/2 cups
onion or Nigella seeds
small red onion, chopped finely
garlic cloves, chopped finely
2 to 3 teaspoons
dried red chile pepper
kilo tomatoes, chopped finely
Salt, to taste
In This Recipe
In a saucepan over medium heat, add the oil, cumin, coriander, Nigella, and fenugreek and anise seeds and allow them to splutter for a few seconds.
Next, add curry leaves and allow them to cook for 10 seconds.
Add the onion and garlic and cook until brown. Add dried red chile pepper, tomatoes, turmeric, and salt.
Cook on medium heat until the tomatoes are soft and the oil rises to the top of the chutney. Remove from heat and keep for up to 5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Sumayya is a food writer and cookery teacher who grew up in Pakistan, but has now found home in Glasgow. Sumayya is passionate about sharing the flavours of her homeland with a view to highlight Pakistani cuisine as a distinct one. The author or two cookbooks: Summers Under The Tamarind Tree (Frances Lincoln) and Mountain Berries and Desert Spice (Frances Lincoln, out April 2017), her writing reminisces about food and memories growing up in Pakistan. She writes for many publications, appears on television, and co-presents BBC Kitchen Cafe weekly, on BBC Radio Scotland.