Saturday, 3 May 2014

Mysore rasam (மைசூர் ரசம்)

Traditionally rasam is made with standard rasam powder or with ingredients roasted and powdered afresh. On the contrary, Mysore rasam is made with ground masala paste. Hence, it has a different, rich taste. My grandmother used to make it often. I prefer to make this rasam, whenever I fancy a change from routine menu. Just give it a try! 

Ingredients: (Serves four)
Tamarind – the size of a wild gooseberry (காட்டு நெல்லிக்காய்)
Toor dhal – a small hollow ladle or 50 ml measure
Jaggery – ½ teaspoon (optional)
Tomato – one, cut into cubes (optional)
Salt – to taste
Cooking oil – 1 tablespoon
Mustard seeds  – 1 teaspoon
Curry leaves – a few

To be ground into a paste:
Coriander/ dhania seeds – 1 tablespoon
Bengal gram dhal – 1 teaspoon
Dried red chilli – 2 no (குண்டு மிளகாய் வத்தல்)
Peppercorns – a few
Grated coconut – 1 tablespoon
Asafoetida – a pinch
Mysore rasam (மைசூர் ரசம்)
Method: Wash toor dhal well, add 100 ml (half a tumbler) of water, and pressure cook for 6-7 minutes (6-7 whistles). You may pressure cook the dhal and rice in separate containers at one go. Soak tamarind in warm water. Heat little oil in a kadai and fry Bengal gram dhal, red chilli, peppercorns and coriander seeds till the gram turns golden brown in color. Add asafoetida to the kadai and switch off the stove. Once cool, grind these ingredients with coconut into a smooth paste and keep aside. 

Add tomato pieces and a ladleful (50ml) of water to the kadai; cover and cook on low flame. Meanwhile, squeeze the tamarind and extract the juice. Add the ground mixture, salt and jaggery to the tamarind juice, mix well. Once tomatoes are soft and pulpy, add the tamarind juice mixture and bring it to boil. Now mash the dhal well with a ladle and add it to the boiling mixture. Reduce the flame and allow it to simmer till the rasam froths. Switch off the stove. Heat the remaining oil in the kadai, add mustard seeds and when they start to sputter switch off the fire. Now add the seasoning and curry leaves to the rasam. Serve hot with rice and poriyal/kootu/pappad. 

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