I spent the past week working at an organic farm on Okinawa. Gee whiz, the life of a farmer is rough! The work is hard and the rewards are great! In addition to feeding pigs (blech!), I learned about the farm-to-table concept. Husband and I talk about a small farm of our own one day, so I was testing the waters. I think it will be a good fit, so long as we can find farmland, in the middle of the suburbs, for a great price. This experience afforded me plenty of opportunity to practice Japanese and eat delicious organic food.
This time of year, we harvest tomatoes and sweet corn on Okinawa. At the farm they call me the tomato princess for the countless hours of cleaning and preserving the abundant tomato crops. Today, as we’re nearing the end of the local tomato season, I bring you tomato chutney.
Chutney is an Indian condiment, typically made with fruits or vegetables, and plenty of spices. You may be familiar with mint or tamarind chutney, found at most Indian restaurants. This chutney can be served over potato cakes, or on the side as a condiment or dipping sauce.
- 1 pound fresh cherry tomatoes
- ½ onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp ghee
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds
- 1 tbsp crushed coriander seeds
- 1 tsp crushed cumin seeds
- 3 whole dry chilis, broken
- salt to taste, about 1 tsp
- ½ tsp turmeric
Blend the tomatoes, onion, and garlic in a food processor. Transfer to a pot and cook on medium heat until reduced by half. Heat the ghee in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds, and cook until they just start to pop. Add the crushed coriander, cumin, and chilis. Cook for an additional minute or two, until you can begin to smell the spices, then add the turmeric and cook for 30 more seconds. Take care not to burn the spices as this can happen quickly. Once the spices are done cooking, immediately dump the spiced ghee into the tomato mixture and stir well. Add salt to taste.
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