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Rasam is a staple item in most South Indian homes, but if you visit 5 different homes, you will get to experience 5 different rasam recipes – all equally delicious. Here is our take on a basic rasam recipe, one you can try with rice or as a light soup. We hope you’ll enjoy the fragrance and flavor of this comfort food.

Toor Daal – 1/2 cup, washed and drained
Water – 2 cups
Water – 6 cups
Tomatoes – 2 medium, chopped
Curry Leaves – 1/2 sprig
Garlic – 3 large cloves, smashed
Green Chilies – to taste, slit
Jaggery (or sugar) – 1 Tbsp or to taste (optional)
Rasam Powder – 2 Tbsp (store bought or homemade recipe)
Salt – to taste
Turmeric Powder – 1/8 tsp
Asafoetida – 1/8 tsp
Homemade Tamarind Paste – 2 Tbsp or to taste (use less if using store bought concentrate)
Red Chili Powder – to taste
Cilantro – for garnishing

For Seasoning:
Ghee – 1 Tbsp
Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
Dried Red Chilies – 1 to 2
Asafoetida – 1/8 tsp
Curry Leaves – 1/2 sprig
Garlic – 5 cloves, smashed


1. Pressure cook Toor Daal with 2 cups Water for 3 whistles and allow the pressure to release on its own.
2. In a large pot, add 6 cups Water, Tomatoes, Garlic, Curry Leaves, Green Chilies, Jaggery, Rasam Powder, Salt, Turmeric Powder and Asafoetida.
3. Boil mixture until tomatoes soften up and the quantity reduces a little.
4. Open pressure cooker and lightly mash the cooked Toor Daal with the back of a ladle.
5. Add Toor Daal to the reduced tomato mixture.
6. Add Tamarind Paste, Salt and Red Chili Powder.
7. Allow mixture to boil for 10-12 minutes.
8. For the seasoning: In a small skillet, heat Ghee and add Mustard Seeds. Allow them to pop.
9. Add Dried Red Chilies, Asafoetida, Curry Leaves and Garlic Cloves.
10. Cook for 30 seconds and pour into prepared Rasam.
11. Garnish with chopped Cilantro.

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