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Iyer Mami's Rasam

Hot & tangy, this rasam is a south Indian accompaniment to rice.
Course Soups, Saars & Rasams
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 people


  • 1/2 cup toor dal
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp haldi
  • 1 tbs oil or ghee
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds optional
  • 1/2 tsp mild hing (asafoetida) powder adjust quantities depending on the strength
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves about 15-20
  • 3 green chillies slit
  • 1 medium onion cut into 1 cm squares (approx. 1/2 a cup)
  • 1/4 tsp haldi
  • 1/2 -1 tsp chilli powder I used extra-hot
  • 1.5 cups water
  • ½-1 tbsp tamarind concentrate
  • ½ a 400g tin cherry tomatoes optional
  • 1.5 tsp salt


  • Pressure cook the toor dal with the haldi and water for 10 minutes. You want it cooked but not mushy.
  • Heat the oil in a saucepan, add the mustard seeds. When they splutter, add the cumin seeds if using and the hing powder. Stir, then quickly add the curry leaves. Stir again and add the green chillies.
  • Fry the green chillies and the curry leaves for a few seconds, then add the onions.
  • Once the onions are half-done, add the haldi, chilli powder, water, tamarind concentrate cherry tomatoes and salt. Bring to the boil and simmer until the onions are well-cooked.
  • Add the cooked dal and bring to the boil.
  • Turn off the heat and garnish with chopped coriander leaves .Serve as an accompaniment to plain rice.


This sambhar should have the dominant notes of hot & sour with a strong hing and haldi flavour.
I add the tadka first here, but if you like, you can start with the onions and add the tadka last. 
Keyword dal, hot, rasam, rice, sour, south indian