Quick Rasam

Quick Rasam:

Rasam or Chaaru or Saaru is a South Indian thin clear soup., traditionally prepared using tamarind juice as a base, with the addition of tomato, and chili pepper, pepper, cumin and other spices as seasonings. Steamed lentils are added along with any preferred vegetables. Nowadays all the seasonings required are combined and ground beforehand into a rasam powder, which is available commercially.

It is eaten with rice or separately as a spicy soup. In a traditional meal, it is preceded by a sambar rice course and is followed by curd rice. Rasam has a distinct taste in comparison to the sambar due to its own seasoning ingredients and is usually fluid in consistency. Rasam is one of the most important dishes of south Indian cuisine.

Rasam considered to be a must for almost all down South  but called by different names, has many avataars.

While the traditional method of preparing a simple rasam involves using home made or store bought rasam powder, using extract of tamarind, adding the tomatoes, other condiments and seasoning, adding dal water and a garnish of Chopped coriander leaves, this process seems to be cumbersome to many especially those who have newly shifted to a place sans their precious spices, or those trying their hand at simple cooking.

This recipe is not only tasty but has several shortcuts and who doesn't like them, even the seasoned cook will take this route and Iam no different.Now off to the recipe.


3 small tomatoes quartered. 
sprigs of curry leaves to garnish.
Chopped coriander leaves to garnish.
A small piece of ginger
1 green chilli

To roast and grind:

1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp black pepper
2 red dry chillies
Pinch of asafoetida
2 tsp Coriander seeds
1 tsp Toor dal/Red gram

A pinch of turmeric powder
salt to taste

For seasoning

1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 red chilly
2 tsp oil.


Keep the tomatoes, washed  and quartered.
You can make a tomato puree by adding the green chilli, and ginger to tomatoes and make a puree.
Add some water to the puree to thin it , around 3 cups. Another method is to add the quartered tomatoes with little water, green chilli,, ginger and sprigs of curry leaves, turmeric powder, and pinch of asafoetida powder to boil for a few minutes till the tomatoes soften and gets cooked. Or make a puree.Choose your method.

Keep the tomato puree in the vessel in which you will prepare the rasam, add turmeric powder, salt, pinch of asafoetida and also some curry leaves to let the flavors get infused in the rasam.

While the mixture is boiling, roast and grind the ingredients given under the heading and add the powder to the rasam boiling.

Check for salt, add some chopped coriander leaves.

When the rasam comes to a boil and starts frothing, remove and cover immediately.
Prepare the seasoning by heating the oil, crackling the mustard seeds, and let the red chilli crisp a bit, add some curry leaves also to crisp and pour this seasoning over the hot rasam.

Enjoy this hot rasam with rice or good enough to drink as it is.

This rasam is good to soak some vadas and prepare Rasa vadas too.

If you have noticed this is the easiest rasam which does not require prepared rasam powder, or cooked dal and when one is in a hurry , this quick rasam comes to the rescue.

With  a tsp of oil roast the ingredients given under the heading.

Keep the pureed tomato mixture to boil with turmeric powder, salt and a pinch of asafoetida.

 Throw some sprigs of curry leaves while this mixture is boiling.
 Powder the ingredients give under roast and grind and keep aside.

Add the ground powder and thin the rasam a bit if required and let it froth.Pour the prepared seasoning on the hot rasam.