Babita Shrestha, the creator of Vegan Nepal, has a new cookbook out, Plant-Based Himalaya: Vegan Recipes from Nepal. In addition to 38 fabulous recipes that will satisfy vegans and non-vegans alike, the book’s stunning photos also provide a glimpse into the pristine landscapes, ancient architecture, rich culture and generous people of Nepal.
The book includes recipes for teas, grains, lentils and beans, curries, greens, snacks, pickles and desserts. Babita has provided a recipe excerpt from the pickles section for golveda ko achaar, a spicy quick tomato sauce served on the side of all kinds of dishes. Enjoy!
By Babita Shrestha
Achaar in Nepali translates to “pickle” and is basically a cold and spicy sauce that is made with vegetables and spices. Achaar is limey, sometimes hot, and always full of flavors. Usually it is eaten as a side dish with your meal, but if you are creative, it can add excitement to any dish.
Six servings is for Nepali Khana Set where you add 1 or 2 tablespoons of achaar on the side to add flavors as seen in the “Cookbook Cover” page below. I used cherry tomatoes because they don’t leave a lot of water making the sauce thick and not soupy. You can choose your favorite tomatoes.
Quick gloveda ko achaar tips
- I absolutely love golveda ko achaar with almost everything. You name it and I’ll pair it with this tangy sauce!
- Sometimes I make achaar without sesame seeds and add extra cilantro. I grew up making grilled tomato sauce with cilantro, but when I moved to the US, I had access only to an electric stove, so I started frying it in the pan.
- You can add this sauce to any curry, pasta, noodles, tacos, or pizza. This is seriously the best sauce you will ever make in your life. It is that addictive, and there is no going back to store-bought sauce.
- Sometimes I add as much as 1 cup of fresh cilantro if I am in the mood for dhaniya ko achaar (cilantro sauce). I switch the flavors depending on the dish and what is left in the refrigerator. Also, during mint season, I mix in a handful of cilantro and mint.
Tomato Sauce (Golveda Ko Achaar)
- 1 pound cherry tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons sunflower oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seed
- 1 clove garlic
- 4 medium fresh green chilis
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- ½ cup chopped cilantro
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Wash the tomatoes.
- Cut the fresh green chilis and garlic cloves into a few pieces.
- Heat a big flat pan on medium and add oil. Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and the chopped garlic. When the cumin starts turning brown after a few seconds, add all the tomatoes and green chilis.
- If you are using larger tomatoes, cut them in half.
- Add salt, mix well, cover, and cook for 5 minutes.
- Stir and turn the stove off. Let the tomatoes cool down.
- On low heat in a pan, roast the sesame seeds to a nice brown color.
- In a blender, combine the cooked tomato mixture with fresh chopped cilantro, lemon juice, and roasted sesame seeds.
- Blend just a few seconds for thick texture or a little bit longer for more smooth textured sauce.
- Luxurious and heavenly golveda ko achaar is ready to serve.
Excerpted from Plant-Based Himalaya: Vegan Recipes from Nepal.