TURMERIC & BLACK PEPPER: Tomato & Onion Chutney Flavor Cubes

After reading over my earlier post on turmeric and black pepper, I realized that it probably sounds complicated. So I asked myself how to simplify the preparation that I described earlier and here’s what I came up with:

  1. Make plain scrambled eggs.
  2. Make plenty of the chutney — all at one time.
  3. Freeze the chutney in small batches for later use.

Then when you make scrambled eggs all you have to do is defrost a few flavor cubes to go with your eggs!

So…here’s a generic recipe for a healthy tomato and onion chutney — very much like the one I described in the previous post (only I like this version a little better). And by the way, this recipe is nothing new. In Indian and Pakistani cuisines, versions of this chutney have been around for ages.



2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 medium fresh tomatoes, chopped
2-4 green chilies, very thinly sliced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
1 heaping teaspoon of turmeric
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Plenty of freshly ground black pepper
A little salt, to taste
Fresh cilantro, chopped


Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil in a large heavy skilled over medium heat. When the oil is warm, add the onions to the pan and sauté them until they are lightly brown.

–Note: A large skillet is recommended so that the onions can cook evenly and not sit on top of one another which would make them steam instead of brown.

When the onions are slightly brown, add the tomatoes and green chiles; mix. Stir occasionally until the tomatoes become soft and mushy.

In a small non-stick skillet, over medium heat, heat the 2 teaspoons of oil until warm. Add the cumin seeds and watch carefully. When the cumin seeds just start to turn a little browner, grab your spatula (a silicone one is great) and move the cumin seeds into the pan with the onion mixture; stir to mix.

Add the  turmeric, ground cumin, black pepper, and salt  to the onion mixture; stir and continue cooking on medium-low heat for a few minutes to let the flavors meld.

Mix in the chopped cilantro (or leave the cilantro out and add it later to the defrosted the frozen chutney.)

What to serve with this chutney?

Scrambled eggs
Cooked grains (rice, wheat berries, quinoa, etc.)

How to freeze the chutney

Fill the muffin pockets of a silicone muffin pan (mini or regular sized silicone muffin pan) with the cooked mixture; freeze; pop the frozen “muffins” out of the muffin tin and place them in a plastic bag for the freezer.

If you don’t have a silicone muffn pan, you can use a metal one following the procedure given in the earlier post about basil pesto.

Enjoy and be healthy,



7 thoughts on “TURMERIC & BLACK PEPPER: Tomato & Onion Chutney Flavor Cubes

  1. This looks like a great recipe…..and the season is perfect for tomatoes. I think I’ll try it! Thanks. Shelley

  2. Hi Leni, I made the chutney and it was awesome. I made the chutney last night and refrigerated it. Tonight I defrosted chicken and put chutney on top of each piece and baked it at 400 for 45 minutes. It was delicious. I’ll definitely keep making the chutney to use with other foods. Thanks.

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