If you are looking for the best side dish for Pongal or Idli / dosai, look no further than this simple onion and tomato gotsu. This Vengayam thakkali gothsu is the easiest ever side dish and is ready in under 20 minutes. All we need is the basic pantry ingredients to make this delicious side dish for pongal.
Pongal is almost a staple in our house. I love eating Ven pongal and gothsu and that is quite evident with the number of pongal and gotsu recipes that I have on my blog.
Pongal is a great recipe choice if you are looking to try out new whole grains like millet or quinoa. I even make pongal with oats and it is so creamy that you will not miss the traditional pongal. You can also check out the millet / thinnai Ven pongal that I make here.
Different kinds of gothsu / gotsu
We are not talking about pongal here, so let's move on to the Gothsu recipe. This gotsu recipe is so flavorful with a lot of ginger and ripe tomatoes. I love making gothsu as a side dish for not just pongal but with idli and dosai as well. The kalyana gothsu is my ever favorite and I look forward to breakfast at weddings where they typically serve this.
Kalyana gothsu or tiffin sambhar is made with mixed vegetables and has moong dal in it as well. It is a slightly more extensive process than this simple vengayam thakkali gotsu. The other kind is the eggplant/brinjal gothsu. It can be made by roasting the eggplant or just as is.
This onion and tomato gothsu can also be made with or without payatham paruppu / moong dal. I am making it as a quick side dish today for lunch and hence making the quicker version without moong dal.
Why make this recipe?
- This gotsu is the easiest ever to make and takes less than 20 minutes from start to finish.
- Works great as a side dish for ven pongal, arisi upma, Idli, or dosai.
- We just need the basic pantry ingredients and it is made just with onions and tomatoes that are easily available.
- It is a vegan recipe and works perfectly if you are following a vegan lifestyle.
- And it is an absolutely kid-friendly side dish recipe. My son would eat an extra scoop of pongal just for the vengayam thakkali gothsu.
Ingredients and substitutes
Check the recipe card at the bottom of the page for exact measurements and printable detailed recipes.
- Onion and tomatoes - These are the two main ingredients in the recipe. I like to use red onions, but any onion would work. I only had sweet onions today and hence used that. My choice of tomatoes to use is Roma, but again this is a great recipe to use any kind of tomatoes in hand. During harvest season, I add a bunch of different kinds of tomatoes to make this.
- Other vegetables - I use quite a bit of grated ginger in the gothsu. Apart from it, we need green chilies and curry leaves. Both these are optional and you can skip them if you don't want to use them. If skipping green chilies, add a little extra red chili powder for heat.
- Seasoning - mustard seeds, cumin seeds and urad dal / ullutham paruppu is what I use for seasoning.
- Spice powders - turmeric powder, red chili powder, and dhania powder/coriander powder. if you don't have coriander powder, we can skip it and add a little sambar powder instead.
- Tamarind extract and jaggery - both of these are optional, but they add a nice flavor to the gothsu. If you are using very sour tomatoes, you can skip the tamarind.
How to make tamarind extract - soak a small marble size tamarind in ¼ cup of water and let it soften. Then squeeze it well and extract the juice. If using tamarind paste, use about ½ teaspoon of tamarind in ¼ cup water and mix.
- Oil and salt
- Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and urad dal / ullutham paruppu. Let the seeds crackle. I use either olive oil or coconut oil. But feel free to use any cooking oil of your choice.
- Once the seasonings are fried, add the chopped onions. Let the onions cook until translucent (1).
- Next add the grated ginger, curry leaves, and green chilies. If you are not using ginger or chilies, skip this step.
- Now add the chopped tomatoes and mix well (2).
- Add all the spice powders - turmeric powder, red chili powder, and dhania powder/coriander powder along with salt (3). Mix well.
- Add the tamarind extract and let the gotsu come to a boil. Simmer and let it cook for about 5 - 7 minutes or until the tomatoes are cooked (4).
- Add the jaggery just before turning off the heat and mix well.
- Serve the vengayam thakkali gothsu hot with ven pongal.
- I love making this gothsu recipe on days when I am short on time. Chop all the vegetables and keep them ready. Once this is done, the whole cooking process takes just about 20 minutes.
- Make a double batch and use it in a couple of days as a side dish for roti or dosai. I also cook it a little further and make tomato rice with it.
- I love using a little bit of jaggery as it balances out the sourness from the tomatoes and tamarind.
- Keep the vengayam thakkali gothsu a little bit on the runny side as it tastes great when mixed with pongal when eating.
Frequently asked questions
Yes, gotsu is a vegan recipe as well as gluten-free.
Gothsu stays well for 3 to 4 when refrigerated. Heat it on the stovetop or microwave before serving.
If you made this recipe and liked it, give a star rating on the recipe card or let me know in the comments below. You could also share it with me on Instagram using #MyCookingJourney and tagging me @sandhya.ramakrishnan. You could follow me and my recipes on Facebook |Instagram | Pinterest | twitter
Vengayam Thakkali Gothsu / Onion and tomato gotsu
- Cutting board
- 1 cup Onion finely chopped
- 2 cups Tomato chopped
- 2 teaspoon Ginger grated
- 3 Green chilies chopped
- 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoon Urad dal / Ullutham Paruppu
- 1 Tablespoon Oil
- 10 Curry Leaves
- ¼ cup Tamarind extract extracted from a small marble size tamarind or use ½ teaspoon tamarind paste
- 1 teaspoon Jaggery /brown sugar
- to taste Salt
- Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and urad dal / ullutham paruppu. Let the seeds crackle.
- Once the seasonings are fried, add the chopped onions. Let the onions cook until translucent.
- Next add the grated ginger and green chilies. If you are not using ginger or chilies, skip this step
- Now add the chopped tomatoes and mix well.
- Add all the spice powders - turmeric powder, red chili powder and dhania powder / coriander powder along with salt. Mix well.
- Add the tamarind extract and let the gotsu come to a boil. Simmer and let it cook for about 5 - 7 minutes or until the tomatoes are cooked.
- Add the jaggery just before turning off the heat and mix well.
- Serve hot with ven pongal.
- I love making this gothsu recipe on days when I am short on time. Chop all the vegetables and keep it ready. Once this is done, the whole cooking process takes just about 20 minutes.
- Make a double batch and use it in couple of days as a side dish for roti or dosai. I also cook it a little further and make tomato rice with it.
- I love using a little bit of jaggery as it balances out the sour from the tomatoes and tamarind.
- Keep the gotsu a little bit on the runny side as it tastes great when mixed with pongal when eating.