Friday 29 June 2018

Tomato Chutney and review of Masala Mamas Recipe Book

Masala Mamas is a beautiful cookbook with recipes and stories from Indian women changing their communities through food and love. This is no ordinary cook book, it’s a book about empowering women.

How did the cook book come about?

Gabriel Project Mumbai (GMP) have come up with a project in collaboration with the Kalwa Slums in India. This is a place, that 200,000 people call home, where clean water and electricity are hard to find and harsh conditions often prevent little children from going to school.
The project was set up to encourage parents to send their kids to the GMP school instead of sending them to work and scavenging and in return they have promised to provide a healthy hot nutritional lunch for them for free.

The lunches are cooked by a group of 16 women the Masala Mamas from the Kalwa slums. The women get together each morning at 7.30 in the Delicio Womens Cooperative kitchens and start the daily food preparations for more than 100 children. The recipes that the women cook daily are featured in the book. They are made using natural and authentic ingredients and the cook book is a collection of authentic vegetarian/vegan dishes that have been cooked by the women for generations in the Marathi community.

Author Elana Sztokman combines each woman’s inspirational story in the book. She draws on each woman’s amazing story of migration, social change and transformation, as each woman left her tribal village that she loves, to seek out better education for her children. This book is aimed at those wanting to support vulnerable populations in Mumbai, whilst learning some hearty, healthy Indian vegetarian and kosher recipe.

Masala Mamas covers recipes from hidden India; vegetarian, vegan and kosher dishes and drinks that have been around for generations, yet remain unique to the area, from breads and breakfast dishes to snacks, mains and sweets.The book ISBN - 978-1-784529-00-0 and you can purchase it on line at Panoma Press priced at £24.99. By buying this book you will be helping the future of a child in the Kalwa Slums.It would make a lovely gift for some one interested in Indian cookery.

All the proceeds from the book go to the Masala Mamas, a non-profit social enterprise promoting nutrition, literacy, health, women empowerment and community development in the Kalwa slum in Thane India.

I really enjoyed reading the recipe book and the story of Masala Mamas. Many of the recipes in the book are ones that I cook at home too, but there were a few that are new to me and I am really excited to test out and feature on this blog. For starters I have tried the Tomato Chutney recipe which turned out to be amazing and my family loved it. I will definitely be making it again.

The Chutney is very versatile as you can serve it chunky as a salsa with tortilla chips and crackers or you can blend it smooth and use it as a dressing too.

Tomato Chutney
Maharastrain, Vegan, Vegetarian
Yield: 1 Jar 

Tomato Chutney

Tangy tomatoes cooked with an array of spices makes this a really delectable chutney to serve.
prep time: 5 minsCook time: 16 minsTotal time: 21 mins


6 Medium tomatoes diced
1 medium white onion finely diced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger paste
2 green chillies finely chopped
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons sunflower oil

To Roast and Grind:

1 tablespoon Urad dhal(black gram lentils)
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds


1. In a frying pan on a low heat dry roast the urad dhal and sesame seeds for 3-4 minutes, remove from heat and transfer to a bowl and allow to cool.
2. Transfer the cooled roasted mixture to a spice grinder and grind to a coarse powder. Keep aside.
3. In a saucepan add the oil, once its hot, add the cumin seeds and then add the onions and saute on medium heat until pink and translucent.
4. Add the ginger paste, chillies, salt, turmeric and the tomatoes and cook for another 7-8 minutes until tomatoes are soft.
5. Add the sugar, lemon juice and the roasted spice mixture and cook for a further 3-4 minutes.
6. Take the chutney off the heat and allow to cool, at this point you can either leave it with the texture or if you prefer you can grind it smooth in a blender. I prefer mine with the texture.
7. Transfer the chutney to a sterilised jar and eat with in 3-4 days. Keep refrigerated.
Created using The Recipes Generator

I was sent  a copy of Masala Mamas to review all views are of my own experience of the book.


  1. We eat a lot of vegetarian food and we both love Indian food so this book really does appeal. I could eat that tomato chutney now

  2. Okay - Indian food, vegetarian dishes, AND it's for a good cause? I need this book!

  3. Now this sounds like a great recipe and the book sounds like one I would love to have a nose through and see what I could find!

  4. I'm always amazed by gastronomy from different cultures. This book seems very informative not only on the food, but also the cultures and society around it.

  5. you're speaking my language! YUM! i def need to get this book!

  6. I'm always on the lookout for new ways to experience world cuisine at home. India has a special place in my heart, so this is extra-interesting to me! I'd love to try it!

  7. What a great cause this book is for. The chutney sounds delicious.

  8. Looks and sounds like a great recipe book. I love collecting recipes books, I will have to check this one out :)

  9. One of my friends is veggie and loves Indian food so I might need to pick up something like this for her x

  10. Tomato chutney sounds lovely. I am a big fan of chutney so this is definitely something I would love to try out.

  11. Great background story to how the book came about - love that it's for a good cause. And the recipe for tomato chutney seems pretty simple to follow, I'll have to give it a whirl x

  12. This looks delicious! What a fun cookbook to get!

  13. I am fascinated by the culture and tastes of Indian food. I am going to try the recipe with my hubby.

  14. Looks like such a marvelous cookbook. And the chutney looks pretty amazing. I would love this deliciousness. Such a beautiful sauce.

  15. I love the idea behind the the book and that sales of it will help support those that really need help. The chutney sounds really good. I need to try and source all the ingredients.

  16. What a great recipe idea and I love that book. I enjoy picking up cookbooks that give back. It's a great and easy way to support others.

  17. That tomato chutney looks amazing! I'll have to checkout that cookbook as well. Thanks for sharing! -Tonya Tardiff

  18. I've been a vegetarian for over 20 years and I've always enjoyed Indian inspired cuisine. In fact, Masala is one of my favorite dishes.

  19. The recipe book looks so authentic especially with all the photos and the tomato chutney recipe looks mouthwatering!

  20. Oh yum! That looks like such a great recipe and what a great book that looks. We love to cook that style of cuisine!

  21. What a lovely book, i am loving the tomato chutney, i can eat that all day every day.

  22. Yum! The tomato chutney sounds fabulous! And I would definitely love to get my hands on that book!

  23. I've got to get this book! It sounds inspiring. And I love the tomato chutney recipe:)

  24. This looks good! I have never use tomato for chutney before. Maybe I should try this, too. By the way, how long does it stay good in the ref? Only 4 days?

  25. What a great idea to capture the stories and recipes of these 16 women who cook amazing food for the school kids living in slums. The chutney looks delicious.

  26. I look forward to trying this next time I come to your house!!


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