Wednesday 15 October 2014

Drumstick Rasam (முருங்கைக்காய் ரசம்)

The seed pods of moringa tree (முருங்கை மரம்), also known as drumsticks (முருங்கைக்காய்) are rich in vitamin C & B complex, potassium and magnesium. Drumsticks are used in Tamilian cuisine to make mainly sambar or kuzhambu. They can also be added to kootu or poriyal along with other vegetables. Drumstick leaves, rich in iron and calcium, are used to make kootu or poriyal. Nonetheless, rasam made with drumstick tastes wonderful, as it adds to the flavor and taste of the preparation! What’s more, drumstick rasam can be served as an appetizer or soup.

You can serve drumstick rasam as an appetizer!
Ingredients: (Serves four) 
Tamarind – the size of a large gooseberry
Toor dhal – a small hollow ladle or 50 ml
Jaggery – ½ teaspoon (optional)
Drumstick – one, cut into 2” long pieces
Salt – to taste
Cooking oil – 1 tablespoon
Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds – ½ teaspoon  
Curry leaves – a few 
Coriander leaves – chopped, 1 tablespoon

For the masala powder: 
Coriander seeds – 2 teaspoons
Bengal gram dhal – 1 teaspoon
Dried red chili – 1-2 no (Adjust to taste)
Asafoetida – a pinch

Method: Wash toor dhal well, add 100 ml of water, and pressure cook for 6-7 minutes (6-7 whistles). You may cook the dhal along with rice. Soak tamarind in warm water. Heat little oil in a kadai and fry Bengal gram dhal, red chili, and coriander seeds till the gram turns golden brown. Add asafoetida to the kadai and switch off the stove. Once cool, powder these ingredients finely and keep aside. 

 Add drumstick pieces and ½ tumbler (100ml) of water to the kadai, cover and cook on a low flame. When the drumstick is cooked, the seeds will separate and come out. At this stage, switch off the fire and allow it to cool. Later, remove the drumstick pieces from the water, scoop out the flesh from the skin and add the flesh back to the water used for boiling. Discard the drumstick skin.

Meanwhile, squeeze the tamarind and extract the juice. Add the ground powder, salt and jaggery to the tamarind juice, mix well. Add the tamarind juice mixture to the drumstick flesh in the kadai, and bring it to boil. Now mash the dhal very well with a ladle and add it to the boiling mixture. Reduce the flame and allow it to simmer till the rasam froths. Heat the remaining oil in the spice pan/ tadka pan (தாளிக்கிற கரண்டி), add mustard and cumin seeds, and when they start to sputter switch off the fire. Now add the seasoning to the rasam. Garnish with curry leaves or coriander leaves. Serve hot with rice and poriyal/kootu/ appalam.

Drumstick Rasam (முருங்கைக்காய் ரசம்)
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