Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Tomato Bath

JFI, an online food blogging event celebrating the natural ingredients is hosted by sweet and talented RP of My Workshop for April. The ingredient she picked for JFI is Tomatoes. What a fine choice it is to celebrate the spring season with beautiful colors and flavors of tomatoes!

The sheer number of tomato based recipes can be overwhelming and sometimes it is reassuring to go back to an old favorite. So I picked a recipe. A Tiffin box favorite from my childhood called tomato bath. Yes, you read it right. The recipe has bath in its name. In this traditional south Indian recipe, toasted semolina is generously bathed and simmered in tomato juice. Not one or two tomatoes, but a lot of tomatoes are used to prepare tomato bath. This is the main difference between regular upma and tomato bath. Because of generous tomato addition, pale wheat colored semolina changes to bright orange color and the tomato dominates the flavor profile. It’s easy to prepare and even easier to enjoy. A must try for tomato fans.

Tomato and Semolina


2 cups semolina or suji
4 ripe tomatoes – finely chopped (about 2 cups)
6 green chillies – finely chopped
1 small red onion – finely chopped
1 inch piece of ginger – grated
¼ cup each – fresh green peas and charoli nuts (or your choice)

Seasoning: (added to bring crunchy bite and fragrance to tomato bath)
1 tablespoon oil or ghee
6 fresh curry leaves and a tablespoon of finely chopped fresh cilantro
½ tsp each – urad dal, chana dal, cumin and mustard seeds

Place an iron skillet on stove top. On medium heat, add and roast semolina/suji to pale gold color, stirring in-between.

Meanwhile, proceed with tomato bath preparation. In a wide pan, add and heat oil/ghee. Toast the ingredients listed in seasoning in the order mentioned. When mustard seeds start to jump around, add green chillies, onion and ginger. Cook for few minutes until the onions soften. Stir in chopped tomatoes and fresh green peas. Cook until tomatoes become mush.

Add about 4 cups of water along with half teaspoon of salt. Cover and bring the water to a boil. At this stage, pour in the roasted semolina/suji at a constant flow/speed, continuously stirrng. Take care not to form semolina lumps. Stir, stir and stir. Sprinkle charoli nuts. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until the whole thing comes together to a moist firm mass.

Serve hot with coconut/peanut chutney or with a cup of yogurt.

Tomato Bath with Yogurt and Cucumber Slices ~ Our Weekend Brunch and
My entry to JFI: Tomatoes hosted by RP of My Work Shop

JFI Notes:
I’ve planned to invite hosts for Jihva (June 07- April 08) on April 2nd. If you are interested to host the event, please visit tomorrow to read the guidelines and pickup your time slot. Thanks.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra,Jihva For Ingredients,Suji/Semolina,Tomato (Sunday April 1, 2007 at 11:45 am- permalink)
Comments (23)

The New Home of Mahanandi:

23 comments for Tomato Bath »

  1. Hey Indira,Good to see you back. My husband loves upma/bath and there are so many out here. Thanks for the recipe. I have something for breakfast tomorrow. I just love this site.

    Comment by Deepika Saripalli — April 1, 2007 @ 11:48 am

  2. Now that’s a lovely color…I’ll try this one just because of that lovely tomato flavor and color, and I will indeed stir, stir and stir. There’s nothing worse than a lumpy upma/bath.

    thanks for this one,


    Comment by Trupti — April 1, 2007 @ 12:17 pm

  3. Dear Indira,

    Thats a divine treat for an Upma fan. To think of it, the only tomato baath i made was with rice (like they make in Bangalore). Though i usually add tomatoes to my kara-baath, this one is in a different league and BEAUTIFUL!

    and also, i finally found roast rave in my local store…..Upma tasted more delicious than it did in past cpl. of years!

    Thanks for this (and all other upma posts of yours).

    Comment by musical — April 1, 2007 @ 1:32 pm

  4. I was not aware of tomato bath being made in semolina. This is interesting. Back home we make using rice and same recipe as yours for the bath . Iam going to try using semolina this week !

    Comment by Soumya — April 1, 2007 @ 1:35 pm

  5. Interesting !never heard abt it before .

    Comment by Ranjani — April 1, 2007 @ 4:55 pm

  6. Hi Indira,
    Nice bright colour of Upma. Love the recipe. thanks for sharing.

    Comment by Menu Today — April 1, 2007 @ 7:37 pm

  7. Tomato bath out of semolina, that;s new to me.We make kichadi almost the same way but with less tomatoes.This is colorful and looks delcious.

    Comment by maheswarisubbu — April 1, 2007 @ 8:14 pm

  8. Hi Indira, my mouth waters at the mere thought of this dish. There are few things I like more than tomatoes, and your recipes with them are delicious. I made your tomato dal recently, and it was just wonderful–lots of flavour and great colour.

    Thank you for sharing the recipe above. Now, I know what I will make for lunch tomorrow. 🙂

    Comment by Victoria — April 1, 2007 @ 8:23 pm

  9. That’s a great recipe Indira.We make a similar’Bhaat’with Rice instead of Rava…but I like this recipe and am surely going to try this one!Thanks

    Comment by madhuli — April 1, 2007 @ 8:32 pm

  10. indira, this tomato bhaath with sooji is new to me. never tried one before.

    Comment by Reena — April 1, 2007 @ 10:31 pm

  11. Indira,
    wow love this upma with the tomato flavour.

    Comment by Roopa — April 2, 2007 @ 12:06 am

  12. Hey Indira,
    Never seen this done with rava before. Looks yummy.
    Where do I sign up for the next Jihva?

    Comment by DesiGirl — April 2, 2007 @ 12:58 am

  13. Indira did you have heavy rains there or is it the indoor lights? Else your pictures are always bright. This variation looks rich in color but I have never tried Charoli in savouries. Must try.

    Comment by Anjali — April 2, 2007 @ 3:01 am

  14. Hi Indira,

    Thats looks so yummy. I never knew semolina can be used to make tomato bath. I am gonna make it tmrw for breakfast. I was wondering, dont we add any chilli pwd or turmeric or salt to it? well, I will definetly add salt and try it tmrw. Thanks for sharing!

    Comment by Shalini — April 2, 2007 @ 5:04 am

  15. Hi Indira,

    This is one good-looking upma!The charoli addition is unusual..would add a nice crunch to it.

    Thanks for sharing..cant wait to try this!


    Comment by anjali — April 2, 2007 @ 7:45 am

  16. Hi Indira,
    I like so much but I don’t know how to make tomato bath ? Thanks for your recipe. Our side marriage time they use to make this Upma. They use to add cinnamon and cloves also. That taste is different and very good also.

    Comment by swathi — April 2, 2007 @ 7:56 am

  17. Indira..lloks pretty bathed in all the rich reddish-orange. I always thought it was “Bhaat” and not “bath” 🙂

    Comment by sandeepa — April 2, 2007 @ 9:54 am

  18. Hey all,

    thanks for your comments and for your interest in this recipe. We call “Bhaat/bhat or pulao”, if rice is used. and “bath” is for semolina-tomato combination. Don’t ask me Why/what/how? 🙂 Effect of ‘ingleese’ mixed with our language, I guess.:)

    Also, you can find recipes with tomato-semolina combination on Google/Yahoo search. This recipe is a very common/typical Andhra dish.

    Happy tomato-Jihva to you all.

    Comment by Indira — April 2, 2007 @ 10:21 am

  19. I’m always looking for an excuse to use those charoli nuts in the freezer 🙂 This delicious dish almost looks a little like couscous. Definitely on my to-do list, thanks Indira 🙂

    Comment by Linda — April 2, 2007 @ 8:20 pm

  20. hi,
    Ur Tomato bath is simple. They look YUMMY…..I realy want to try it……..

    Comment by Sukanya — April 12, 2007 @ 11:38 am

  21. Hi Indira,

    I really love your site and have tried a few recipes with success.

    I was excited to see this recipe, since I LOVE tomatoes. And the picture looked awesome! But, I tried it and it came not so good, it was too sour. Do you think I used too many tomatoes? I followed it exactly the same way, except I did not use any nuts or peas.

    Keep up the wonderful work.

    I am sorry to hear that Nonie/Alison. I think not adding nuts and peas is the reason why you felt the sour note. We usually add peas, sometimes potatoes and carrots also to balance and also for their sweet taste. Give it a try with these additions for your next try, if there is any. Please don’t give up. Tomato bath usually has an intense taste, it’s not for everybody, that’s for sure.

    Comment by Nonie — April 14, 2007 @ 3:41 pm

  22. hi Indira,

    I tried this dish but it came wonderful
    thanks a lot

    Comment by Sunitha — June 7, 2010 @ 5:39 pm

  23. nice combinataion

    Comment by Siri — September 21, 2010 @ 9:00 pm

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