Molagai thokku was my dad’s favorite relish. Ever. Even as he struggled with diet restrictions following hospitalization and a low sodium diet, My mom’s mom created a molagai thokku minus the salt with plenty of jaggery. Appa loved it and would devour it creamy thayir sadham.
So, when Amma spied a bag full of lush green serrano peppers I had bought from our local farmer’s market, she asked me if I would like the thokku. I was all for it and she made the prep as I watched on.
What better way to usher in Mother’s day than a shared cooking experience?
Stuff you will need:
Serrano peppers – 1lb
Salt to taste
Asafoetida – 1 tsp
Gingelly (Sesame) oil – 2 tbsp
Tamarind – lump the size of a small lemon
Mustard – 1 tsp
Urad dhal – 2 tsp
Jaggery – A ball the size of a small lemon
How to make it?
In a non stick pan or wok, heat a bit of the gingelly oil and temper mustard, urad dhal till reddish brown. Add asafoetida and the chillies and the tamarind. Saute till color of peppers turn a dull green. Set aside. When cool, add salt and grind to a fine paste.
In the same wok, add the remaining oil and heat. Add the ground chilli paste, jaggery and saute on low-medium heat till the oil separates out.
Remove from heat and let cool. Store in an air tight container. Keeps a couple of months in the fridge.
Use Jalapeno peppers for a milder tasting relish.