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 Rasam   
 

 

Rasam

- submitted by Dahlia on 02-10-2008


           Rasam is a south indian curry/soup usually had with rice. It is made with tamarind, tomatoes, pepper, cumin, garlic, lentils etc. It is called saaru or chaaru in telugu and kannada. In the traditional 3 course south indian meal, it is usually had as a second course with sambhar being the first course and curd being the grand finale.

           There are many different types of rasam based on the ingredients used. But the basic recipe remains the same, the recipe that is given below. The additional ingredient is added to the basic rasam to enhance and change its flavour. Some of the variations of rasam that I am familiar with are :- Poodu (garlic) Rasam, Pineapple rasam, Mango Rasam, Milagu (Pepper) rasam/ Milagu Saaru, Neem leaf rasam, Ginger rasam, Lemon Rasam - sourness comes from lemon juice instead of tamarind juice, Paruppu Rasam/ Pappu Saaru - made with lentils, Chettinadu Kozhi (Chicken) Saaru/ Rasam - made with chicken broth/stock instead of water, Tomato Rasam/ Saaru - with tomato puree as main ingredient, Mysore Rasam - a fragrant soup made with fried grams/dals, Jeerige saaru - made with cumin, Coconut Rasam, Carrot Rasam - Boiled and Crused carrot is added to the rasam, Beetroot Rasam - Boiled and crushed beetroot is added to the rasam etc. 

Ingredients 
Tamrind - lime sized
Tomato - 1 (finely chopped or crushed)
Garlic - 3-4 cloves (crushed)
Green Chilly - 1
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp 
Water - 3 cups 
Salt - to taste 
Oil - 2 tblsp 
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - 7 leaves 
Asafoetida powder - 1/2 tsp 
Coriander leaves (cilantro) – handful (chopped)

Rasam Powder ingredients
Black Peppercorns - 3 tsp
Cumin seeds - 2 tsp
Corriander Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Toor Dal - 2 tsp
Red Chilly - 2  
 
Method 
1. Dry roast and grind everything under ‘rasam powder ingredients’ very coarsely. This is the Rasam powder.
2. Soak the tamarind in warm water for 5 minutes to get tamarind juice.
3. Heat little oil in a pan, add the garlic, green chilly and tomatoes. Let the tomatoes cook for while, until they become soft and juicy.
4. Now add tamarind juice,  turmeric, salt, cilantro and water.
5. Bring it to a boil then reduce the flame.
6. Add the rasam powder and asafoetida. Let it simmer for about 5 minutes. Do not let it boil.
7. In the meanwhile, heat oil in pan, add  mustard seeds and curry leaves.
8. Once it splutters add it to the rasam. Garnish with some fresh chopped cilantro. Tasty rasam is ready to serve. Plain rice with rasam and paapad is an excellent combination.