Monday, January 7, 2008

Tomato rasam

There are probably thousands of recipes for tomato rasam online. Some recipes are with crushed tomatoes, some with dal water, with or without coriander seeds, etc. My tomato rasam has a few teaspoons of tomato paste. It gives the rasam a beautiful red color, thickens it a bit and adds to the sour flavor. This is a wonderful spicy/sour/peppery drink that will clear your sinuses for sure!


  • A small lime size piece of tamarind
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 dry red chili
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 button onions or a small piece of onion
  • ½ tsp coriander seeds
  • ¼ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 pinch of fenugreek
  • Few curry leaves
  • 2 tomatoes
  • Few sprigs of coriander
  • 1 ½ tsp tomato paste
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Oil

Dissolve the tamarind in water. In a mortar and pestle or a grinder, crush chili, garlic, onions, peppercorns, cumin and coriander seeds.

Heat oil; add asafoetida and the mustard seeds, when the mustard seeds splutter, add the fenugreek seeds. Add the crushed spices and fry a little. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook a little. Pour the tamarind juice, tomato paste and salt. Bring it to a boil. Turn off the heat; puree it with a hand blender till the tomatoes are crushed and soupy (optional). Garnish it with fresh coriander.

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