This Tomato sabji is a tangy and mildly sweet dry dish made with tomatoes, peanuts, desiccated coconut, jaggery, herbs and spices. This vegan tomato bhaji comes from the Maharashtrian cuisine. In the Marathi language, it is known as tomato chi bhaji. You can serve this dish with roti or paratha or as a side dish with dal rice.
Tomato bhaji is a tangy and sweet-tasting dish. The stars in this dish are tomatoes, peanuts, jaggery and desiccated coconut. Overall it is a healthy dish packed with flavors.
To make this tomato sabzi, you can use either unripe green or red tomatoes. I had got some green tomatoes to make this sabzi, but in a few days some of the tomatoes got a bit ripe, as you will see in the photos below.
Tomatoes go into most of our cooking. Sometimes even if the recipes do not call for tomatoes, I add them. So you see we love tomatoes and don’t mind adding them to most of our food.
I had made this recipe many months back and it was in the drafts. Lately, I have been getting a lot of requests to post quick and easy recipes. So here is a quick and easy recipe with tomatoes.
If you have surplus tomatoes from your garden or extra tomatoes purchased from your farmer’s market then this recipe is a good way to use them up.
This tomato sabzi goes very well with chapatis or as a side dish with Varan Bhaat or Amti or even plain simple Dal Fry. Although the recipe looks simple but it tastes good. Give it a try if you want to use unripe tomatoes.
The recipe has been adapted from the cookbook Ruchira. This is also a no onion no garlic recipe.
How to make Tomato Sabji
1. Firstly on low heat, in a small frying pan or a skillet brown ¼ cup desiccated coconut. Keep on stirring often so that the coconut gets golden evenly. Remove and keep aside.
If you don’t have desiccated coconut then you can use fresh coconut. But roast fresh coconut in 1 to 2 teaspoons oil until golden.
2. In the same pan in which we roasted desiccated coconut, add ¼ cup peanuts. Roast the peanuts till they become crunchy and change color with a few black spots on them. Remove and allow them to cool.
If you have pre-roasted peanuts then skip this step. However, don’t use salted or spiced peanuts.
3. In a mortar-pestle or in a dry grinder, crush or grind the peanuts to a coarse powder and keep them aside.
4. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a pan. You can use any neutral flavored oil. I generally prefer to make this sabzi with peanut oil.
Keep the heat to low. First, add ½ teaspoon mustard seeds and crackle them. Then add 2 chopped green chilies and 5 to 6 curry leaves. Stir.
5. Now add a pinch of asafoetida (hing) and ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder. Add the spices on a low heat so that they don’t get burnt.
Note that for a gluten-free version skip adding asafoetida or source gluten-free asafoetida.
6. Stir very well.
7. Add 8 to 10 medium sized, chopped tomatoes. About ½ kg of tomatoes.
8. Stir and mix very well and saute the tomatoes on low to medium-low heat till they are about half done. You can also cover the pan with a lid and cook the tomatoes.
9. When the tomatoes are half cooked, add 1 to 1.5 tablespoons of powdered jaggery and salt as required. Add both jaggery and salt as per your taste. Stir and mix very well and cook the tomatoes further till they soften.
10. When the tomatoes have softened and cooked well, add the ground peanut powder, the roasted desiccated coconut and 2 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves.
11. Stir and Mix very well again.
12. Serve tomato bhaji with phulka or chapatis or plain paratha. It can also be served as a side dish with dal rice or any Indian meal. It can also be packed for a lunch box with a side of roti or whole wheat bread.
If you like then while serving you can garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
Few more tasty sabzi recipes for you!
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Tomato Sabji | Tomato Bhaji
- 500 grams tomatoes – green or red, or about 8 to 10 medium tomatoes or 3 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 to 1.5 tablespoon jaggery, add as required as per your taste
- ¼ cup peanuts – roasted and powdered
- ¼ cup desiccated coconut, roasted till golden
- 2 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
- 2 tablespoon peanut oil or any neutral flavored oil
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 green chilies – chopped
- 5 to 6 curry leaves
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
Preparation for tomato bhaji
- Firstly on a low heat brown ¼ cup desiccated coconut. Keep on stirring often so that the coconut gets golden evenly. Remove and keep aside.
- In the same pan which we roasted desiccated coconut, add ¼ cup peanuts. Roast the peanuts till they become crunchy and change color with a few black spots on them. Remove and allow them cool.
- In a mortar-pestle or in a dry grinder, grind the peanuts to a coarse powder.
- Rinse and chop the tomatoes and green chilies.
Making tomato bhaji
- Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and crackle them. Then add chopped green, curry leaves, a pinch of asafoetida and turmeric powder.
- Stir very well. Add 8 to 10 medium sized, chopped tomatoes.
- Stir very well and saute the tomatoes till they are about half done.
- When the tomatoes are half cooked, add jaggery and salt as required. Add both jaggery and salt as per your taste. Stir very well and cook the tomatoes further till they soften.
- When the tomatoes have softened and cooked well, add the ground peanut powder, roasted desiccated coconut and chopped coriander leaves.
- Stir and mix very well.
- Serve tomato bhaji with chapatis or phulkas or as a side dish with dal rice combo. You can also pack it in lunch box.
- The recipe can be doubled or tripled.
- Use a neutral flavor oil. I generally make it in peanut oil.
- You can use either unripe green or red tomatoes.
- In place of desiccated coconut, you can use fresh coconut. If using fresh coconut then roast it in 1 to 2 teaspoons oil until golden.
Nutrition Info (Approximate values)
This Tomato Sabji post from the archives (June 2015) has been updated and republished on 12 October 2021.