I got the recipe from a cousin, years ago. As HD loves it, I've kept improving on it till it found a place in the family 5 star cookbook.
This is what I used today as our ripe tomatoes aren't really juicy...they've travelled a long way in refrigerated trucks and are beautiful and shiny red but flavor wise I had to use other ingredients to get the taste I wanted.
If you have great tomatoes use about eight.
1 oz butter or ghee.
Bay leaf, cloves, elaichi, cinnamon.
1 huge tomato, chopped.
1 16 oz can peeled chopped tomatoes.
2 ozs tomato sauce.
1/2 cup frozen peas (optional).
1 large/2 medium onions, chopped.
I really good, firm, tasty, tomato. (Chop and set aside.)
1/2 cup chopped haridhania/fresh coriander.
5 mint leaves chopped fine.
1/2 cup haridhania, 4 cloves garlic...ground fine.
1 tsp biriyani pulao masala or garam masala powder.
Salt, chilli powder and pepper powder...to taste.
!/4 tsp haldi.
After 2-3 mins when the smell is great, put in chopped onion. You might have to remove the spices first, if you are making this for folk not used to eating 'around' our spices.
Fry onions golden brown, remove 2 Tbsp and set aside.
To the rest, add ground masala and the huge chopped tomato.
(If using all fresh tomatoes, add them now.)
Fry for about five mins on medium heat.
Add the canned tomatoes and sauce, frozen peas, chopped haridhania, salt, chilli powder, biriyani masala powder, pepper powder and haldi.
Cover and let it cook on medium for ten minutes. It should thicken to the consistency of thick dosa batter.
(I usually make extra so this is a large quantity. It freezes well and tastes great on it's own with dosa or chapati)
Mix well, then place on stove on low for 5 mins or while you fry the vades.
You can dot the top with a little more butter before you do this.
The fresh chopped tomatoes were done by a chef at a catered party and are really a great idea. If the rice is a bit spicy, the fresh tomatoes cool your mouth so well.
The chopped mint gives a really good taste as well, but it really has to be fine.
The tomato rice pairs really well with the channa dal vases (especially the chill one HD says) and it tastes better the next day.
Tomato rice freezes and reheats well but I prefer freezing the mix and then adding freshly cooked/day old rice to it.
Also chop them small or cook them longer so they disintegrate in the cooking.
I add a few pieces at the end and cook for a couple of minutes as HD likes that but that's just my twist on it.