As I mentioned in my last post, I met some of my blogging friends when I was in India this past February. Archana’s gave us a packet of Tonak masala. She also prepared alsande tonak during our meet in Chennai and unfortunately I missed the cooking session as I had to get back to Hyderabad a day early to attend one of my niece’s wedding. Along with tonak masala she also gave us a printout of the recipe. Last month I followed her recipe and made alsande tonak. Since I already had the masala, preparation was a breeze.
Ok, ok, I have been talking a lot about tonak and some of you might not even know what I am taking about. In fact, even I was unaware of tonak until recently. Tonak is a popular Goan curry common in many Goan homes. It is served with pao, a crusty bun similar to pav.
It is prepared for breakfast, lunch and even for dinner. From what I have read online, it is a common preparation at weddings and celebrations. Tonak is prepared with alsande ~ black eyed peas or cowpeas and with mushrooms. I have also come across tonak recipes with other vegetables as well. I made with alsande. Since I usually have a pack of frozen black eyed peas in the freezer, I used those. If using dry black eyed peas, it needs to be soaked overnight and cooked until tender before making the curry.
- 10 Cloves
- 1” Cinnamon
- 3 tbsp. Coriander Seeds
- 4-6 Black Pepper Corns
- 12 - 13 Dry Chilies
- ½ tsp. Fennel Seeds
- Pinch of Nutmeg
- 2 Anise Petals
- Oil to fry the spices
- Roast all the spices in little bit of oil. When cool, grind to fine paste.
- ½ lb. or 1 ½ - 1 ¾ cup Black Eyed Peas (I used frozen black eyed peas)
- 1 small Onion chopped or ½ cup chopped Onion
- 1 small - medium sized Tomato, chopped or ½ cup chopped Tomato
- ¼ tsp. Salt
- 2 cups Water
- 1 tbsp. Oil
- 1 small Onion chopped
- 2 - 3 Garlic Cloves
- ¾ cup frozen Coconut (check note)
- 1 tbsp. + ½ tsp. Tonak Masala
- 1 - 1 ¼ tsp. Salt (adjust to taste)
- 1 tsp. Chili Powder (adjust to taste)
- Cook black eyed peas with chopped onion, tomatoes and ¼ tsp. salt. This will take about 15-20 minutes.
- While the black eyed peas are cooking, in a pan heat 1 ½ oil and roast together garlic & onion until onion is translucent.
- Add coconut and continue roasting until coconut turns light brown.
- Cool the mixture and grind to fine paste. Add some water if required.
- Heat remaining oil in the pan and add the paste to pan. Roast the masala paste for few minutes, add turmeric and give it a good stir.
- Add the paste, tonak masala, chili powder, salt to cooked black eyed peas and bring it to a boil.
- If the gravy is too thick, add some water, cook until the spices blend in. Once the desired consistency is reached and the curry is cooked, turn off the heat.
- Serve hot with pao. I served it with roti and I think it would go well even with rice.
- I used ¾ cup frozen shredded coconut and I think when thawed this would be about ½ cup.
This day in 2008 - Frozen Berries with Warm White Chocolate
This day in 2011 - Chocolate Almond Biscotti
This day in 2014: Greece Spanakopita
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 56
Mireille Roc (@ChefMireille) says
I love black eyed peas - what a flavorful presentation
Suma Gandlur says
Sounds like a flavorful bean gravy. Bookmarked & I bet we are going to love it.
Usha must say your pics are droolicious . 😀 Glad you liked the tonak. Thanks for the mention.
Gayathri Kumar says
Tonak looks so yum. I remember the day when Archana made it for us. We missed you badly that day..
Archana sent me the recipe for this dish, but I didn't get a chance to try it yet. Your clicks are tempting me to try this tonak real soon.
Usha your presentation is stunning!..so classic..and needless to say the dish is awesome..
Yet to try goan food.. Interesting and looks delicious
Stunning pictures Usha. Love the use of alasandalu.
That bowl of black eyed peas looks fabulous, such a nutritious goan dish..Lucky to get tonak masala from Archana..
I am yet to try goan food. Sounds interesting
am yet to make it although I have archana's recipe .. this looks delish !
Sneha datar says
The gravy has a lovely colour and the tonak is tempting.
Alsande tonak looks so flavorful.You have presented it so beautifully.
I still remember the flavors in that tonak which Archana made for us and yours looks just like that too good Usha...
that is such an authentic one!!! love it so much...
Vaishali Sabnani says
I have enjoyed this Goan dish right in Goa, Archana made it for me when I visited her...you have presented the dish so well that it's tempting me to try it all over again, though I have made it for one of the earlier BMs .