Tangy Tomato Rice

Tomato rice is such a tasty dish, I call this my lunch box special. This recipe is invented just to use the leftover rice, It’s tangy and flavorful and loved by all. 

Rice is a staple food in south India, we eat rice in many different ways. It’s a must have in our meals and it’s served with curries and tasty vegetable side dishes. We also make flavored rice dishes like lemon rice, tamarind rice, coconut rice, carrot rice, mango rice and tomato rice.This is easy to make and they are great for packed lunches for school or office. 

Since these recipes call for cool room temperature rice it’s a great way to use leftover rice. 

Let me show you how to make this.

  • Tomatoes – 2 diced
  • Onion – 1 sliced
  • Green chili -2 slit (optional)
  • Garlic – 1 grated or finely minced
  • Red chili powder- 1 teaspoon 
  • Fennel seeds – 1 teaspoon 
  • Garam masala powder – 1 teaspoon 
  • Coriander leaves – 2 tablespoons (chopped)
  • Coconut – 1/4 cup grated (fresh/frozen)
  • Oil and butter for sautéing 
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon
  • Cooked rice – 2 cups ( leftover/fresh -room temperature rice)

Heat a tablespoon of oil and a small slice of butter, add the fennel seeds 

Add the sliced onions and sauté it for sometime. It slightly changes color 

Add the diced tomatoes and sauté it until it’s soft 

Now add the green chili, red chili powder, garam masala and salt

sauté it for a minute until the raw smell is gone.

Add the grated garlic and chopped coriander leaves and mix it well. 

Normally we add coriander leaves only for garnish but in this dish we are sautéing it with the spices since it gives the extra depth of flavor. 

Now add the grated coconut and mix it well. It literally thickens it into a paste so that when you mix it with the cooked rice it doesn’t make it soggy.

This is special in South Indian cooking we add grated coconut in many of our dishes. 

If you are not a big fan you can leave the coconut out. But you need to sauté it longer in order to thicken it. 

Once the wonderful aroma fills your kitchen. You know the tomato mix is ready. 

Now add the cooked room temperature rice ( if it’s kept in the fridge you can slightly warm it up) little at a time and mix it gently. Taste it and add more salt if needed. 

If you are using freshly cooked rice, allow it to cool in a tray for sometime before mixing it otherwise it gets mushy and completely changes the texture and taste of the rice.

Tasty tomato rice is ready and it is mouthwatering !

We serve it with Thayir Pachadi (raitha) which is sliced onion in creamy yogurt sauce on the side. 

Here is how we make it 

  • Plain yogurt – 1 cup 
  • 1/2 of big onion –  thinly sliced
  • Green chili – 2 slit ( optional) 
  • Coriander leaves – few for garnish
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon 

Mix the onion, Coriander, chili and salt and leave it on the board for sometime, It makes the onion soft. 

Now beat the yogurt nicely and make it creamy like this . If it’s really thick you can add a tablespoon of water and beat it nicely.

Add the salted onion slices and mix it well . Let it rest for 15 to 30 minutes to get the best results. 

This adds the crunch and creaminess to this tangy tomato rice. 

To add an extra crunch we serve it with some Indian crackers ( vathal) or some crunchy potato chips.  

My mom makes this rice for my school lunch which I never get to eat, all my friends gobble it even before lunch time. If they ever go through the school year book now,I’m not sure  if they remember me by my name but I’m pretty sure they will remember me as the girl who brings tomato rice for lunch:)

On a nice sunny day we go on a picnic, first thing I make is tomato rice it keeps well and tastes great at room temperature. It’s quick and easy to make and you can also have this for dinner with a side of pan fried veggies like cauliflower or potatoes, to make it a proper meal. It tastes very delicious. Hope you like it too ….Enjoy ! 

This whole process made me really hungry…..I’m going to pour a glass of cool water and enjoy my lunch. So long ! 

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6 Comments Add yours

  1. Mouth watering …… It’s a different version ….. so will give a try soon …..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love a good tomato rice! Can eat this any time of the day with curd. Tastes so yummy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amy says:

    This looks amazing! I am so hungry now 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Amy 🙂


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