This curry made with tomatoes and onions is from Gujarat, a region in the western part of India. I am not sure though, of its origin in my kitchen :-) I believe I read this recipe a long while ago in some book or magazine and have been making it since then. I love the tangy spicy taste of this curry and find the speed and simplicity of this a real plus, especially when I am in a hurry or when I am running out of veggies.
Before I get to it though, let me share something completely off topic. Recently while working on my glossary I was researching the health benefits of mustard seeds.If you are familiar with Indian cooking then you know that mustard seeds play a prominent role in most dishes especially curries. I never really gave any thought to mustard seeds and if I would have had to say why they were used in cooking I would have concluded that they were there for taste and for decorative purposes :-) I am sure that my fellow bloggers will agree that mustard seeds, split gram lentil, cilantro and other garnishes have gained special importance as decoration, now that we have to take pictures for our blogs :-)
Anyway I was amazed when I learned that mustard seeds actually are rich in selenium and omega-3 fatty acids. They are also a good source of phosphorous, magnesium iron, zinc and calcium. Really, who knew? I, for one did not, so the next time you feel like skipping the tempering in Indian cooking you may want to rethink that.....
Just wanted to update,my friend Chandani tells me the right word here is shaak not saag, as shaak means subji /curry in Gujarati.Thanks for letting me know that Chandani, I corrected the title of the post too. My apologies for inadvertently getting the name of this dish wrong the first time....
Ingredients and Method to make Sev Tomato Nu shaak
2 large onions cut fine (I used yellow)
7 large tomatoes cut into 1/2 inch pieces ( I used Roma)
1/4 tsp turmeric
salt to taste
1/2 tsp chilli powder ( or according to taste)
1 tbsp oil
3/4 tsp cumin seeds
sev according to taste
2 tbsp cilantro cut fine (optional)
Heat oil in a large heavy bottomed pan. Add cumin seeds to this oil.
When the cumin seeds splutter add onions and saute until the onions become transparent.
Add turmeric and saute for a few seconds.
Add tomatoes, salt and chilli powder and saute until the tomatoes are cooked and become soft
Garnish with cilantro and sev just before serving and serve hot with bread, roti or plain rice.
Serves approximately 2
If you plan to serve this a while after you make it, add sev just before serving.