Tamata shorva is an Indian version of a stew. Popular in some parts of Telangana region, it is a light, flavorful side dish for plain rice, flavored rice and a variety of Indian flatbreads. It is not a curry nor a soup, and the consistency of a shorva is somewhere between the two.
Shorba is very popular in Indian restaurants and it is a soup, usually served as a starter. Unlike shorba, shorva is a side dish. It is our go to dish when pressed for time, have unexpected guests or when not in a mood to cook an elaborate meal.
Tamata shorva is prepared with only tomatoes or with lima beans and/or eggs, as I have done here. Potatoes and fresh green peas are also a nice addition to tomato shorva.
Other vegetables that turn out great in shorva are bottle gourd, cauliflower and okra. All these recipes are similar with a few variations. Checkout the recipes and the variations in bottle gourd shorva, cauliflower shorva and bendakaya shorva recipes.
Meat versions of the shorva are chicken shorva and mutton shorva. While the vegetable versions have milder spice levels, the meat version has a decent amount of garam masala to balance the flavors of the meat.
- Tomatoes - hero ingredient and the taste of tamata shorva depends on the variety of tomatoes used. I use vine ripe tomatoes and any tomato that is sour works well in this recipe. For folks in India, use desi tamatar.
- Milk / Yogurt - Since vine ripe tomatoes are sour, I use milk. When using any other variety of tomato that is not sour, use yogurt.
- Chili - use both green chilies and chili powder. Substitute Indian green chilies or the Thai chilies with serrano peppers or jalapeno peppers. Or just use chili powder.
- Dry Coconut - in powder form. Grind sliced or chopped coconut to a powder along with a few cardamom seeds.
- Other Ingredients - Oil, onion, green chilies, ginger garlic paste, coriander powder and turmeric.
- Optional Combination - Our favorite combination is boiled eggs and lime beans (read this as mine). Potatoes and tomatoes is a good combination. Cauliflower, bottle gourd are also good additions, with minor variation to the recipe.
Boil eggs, peel and make small cuts on the eggs or pierce with a fork. Keep aside until ready to use. You can make this recipe even without eggs.
Step 1: Heat oil in a saucepan, saute curry leaves and green chilies until chilies change color and then saute onions until translucent.
Step 2: Add methi powder (if using), ginger garlic paste and cook for a minute, until raw smell of ginger dissipates.
Step 3: Then add coriander powder, chili powder, turmeric, salt and mix well.
Step 4: Add boiled eggs, lima beans, tomatoes and fry until the spices coat the eggs.
Step 5: Cover the saucepan with a lid and cook until tomatoes are soft and mushy. Then reduce the flame to low.
Step 6: Add water, mix well and slowly add milk. Mix well and bring it to a boil. Simmer for 5 - 8 minutes, add coconut powder, cilantro and simmer until done.
Store leftovers in an airtight bowl for up to 4-5 days. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop before serving.
- Tomatoes - Use ripe and sour variety of tomatoes for a flavorful shorva.
- Milk - Always reduce the flame, or turn of the flame, add water to cool the temperature of the mixture and then add milk. Mix quickly to avoid curdling.
- Consistency - Your shorva is too thick or too thin in consistency? Then adjust it by diluting it with some water or thickening with some coriander powder and/or dry coconut powder.
The addition of poppy seeds enhances the flavor of shorva, however I do not use it on a regular basis. Since tamata shorva is a staple at home, I seldom use poppy seeds.
Combinations - Potatoes and tomatoes is a good combination. In this recipe, add the potatoes after adding all the spices, semi cook potatoes and then add tomatoes.
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- 1 Cutting board & knife
- 1 Saucepan & spoon/spatula
- 1 ½ tablespoon Oil
- ¼ teaspoon Fenugreek or Methi Powder opt
- ½ small Onion chopped
- ¾ teaspoon Ginger Garlic Paste
- 2 Green Chilies split into 2 adjust to taste
- 1 teaspoon Coriander Powder
- ¾ teaspoon Chili Powder adjust to taste
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 1 ¼ teaspoon Salt adjust to taste
- 4 Boiled Eggs opt
- ⅓ cup Frozen Lima Beans opt
- 2 large Tomatoes Sliced 290 grams
- 4 tablespoons Milk or 2-3 tablespoons Yogurt
- 1 teaspoon Coconut Powder with few cardamom seeds
- Cilantro for Garnish
- Boil eggs, peel and make small cuts on the eggs. Or pierce the eggs with a fork.
- In a saucepan heat oil, add curry leaves and green chilies.
- When chilies change color, add onions and cook until translucent.
- Add methi powder (if using), ginger garlic paste and cook for a minute, until raw smell of ginger dissipates.
- Then add coriander powder, chili powder, turmeric, salt and mix well.
- Add boiled eggs, lima beans and continue to cook for a minute, until the spices coat the egg.
- Add tomatoes, stir, cover with a lid and cook until the tomatoes are tender and soft.
- Add 1 - 1 ¼ cups of water and mix well. Add milk and mix quickly until it blends into the mixture. Bring it to a boil.
- Simmer for 5 minutes. Add coconut powder, if using and simmer for another 5 minutes, sprinkle chopped cilantro and turn off the flame.
- Serve with hot pooris or rice.