The Family Rasam

It’s a soup! It’s a broth! It’s a staple for people in the Southern parts of India!

Yet, Rasam changes flavor, ingredients and texture in every home I’ve ever eaten it at. Every family makes it a little different and each have their favorite type! Drink it like a warm spicy soup, or mix it with a little rice for a broth-y rice – either way, the definitely the recipe to warm you up this fall and winter! Here’s our family recipe, from my Aunt’s kitchen, to yours!

Tamarind–10gm (or half teaspoon tamarind paste)
Tomato (soft) — 3
Sambar powder–1.5 tsp (easy to get at a big grocery store/Indian store)
Tuvar dal — 0.5 cup (easy to get at a big grocery store/Indian store)
Tadka/Taste Maker!
Mustard seeds – 0.5 tsp
A few coriander leaves and curry leaves
Cumin powder – a pinch
Pepper (powder) 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida – a pinch
Clarified butter/ghee – 1 tsp
Salt – to taste
Soak the tamarind in warm water and after a while (5-6 minutes) squeeze out the juice. This step I think is so painful that I usually go straight for the tamarind paste.
Boil the tuvar dal and tomato. The lentils should be soft but still retain their texture. , Boil the tamarind juice with in a big pot that is full to about 1/4 with plain water. Add salt to taste and pop in the sambar powder at the same time. Cook/boil the mix till the really raw smell of tamarind disappates and you are left with a less raw smelling more pungent spicy smell (takes a good 20 minutes or more).
Seperately, take the cooked Toor Dal and tomato and blend it till pulped and add to the tamarind-sambar powder water.
For the Tadka:
Heat the clarified butter, pop in the mustard seeds, along with the cumin & pepper asafoetida.
Drop the Tadka in the main pot of rasam. Add curry leaves and coriander leaves in the boiling rasam to add to the flavour.
Time to make: 45 minutes
Feeds: 4-5


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