Udupi  is    a well known city in  Karnataka state for its unique flavorsome cuisine, the beautiful divine Krishna temple,  and the  chain of popular Udupi restaurants known for the pure Shivalli brahmin style cooking.Sadly like many good eating places the name Udupi has been misused as it draws patrons in huge numbers, while they are not authentic in the true Udupi  style cooking . There are so many dishes found in the menu card of such restaurants claiming to be authentic Udupi which are not usually cooked  by true Udupi restaurants.

Originally these restaurants were owned by single families who were priests in the temple so they brought the same style of cooking to the hotels too.
The cuisine is a specialty of the famed Krishna temple there where simplicity is the key while balancing the flavors using locally grown produce.Onions and garlic do not find a place in the traditional style.
Having grown up in Dharwad, ( North Karnataka)  our only solace to a good eating joint was one of these authentic Udupi restaurants that was our haven . Pure bliss in having a simple tasty rasam as an appetizer . The jaggery added to the rasam is the key to its unique taste I think.
It is not surprising that you will find several  dishes in this blog  from the Tulunadu as they say , Tulu is one of the languages spoken there.


3 medium size ripe  tomatoes chopped finely
1 small lime size tamrind , soaked in warm water and juice extracted . or use tamrind paste
1/4  cup toor dal cooked and mashed.
2 green chillies slit
1   tbsp of jaggery
Pinch of turmeric powder
salt to taste
2-3 tbsp Udupi rasam powder ( Rasam powder recipe follows )
some curry leaves
Coriander leaves for garnishing

For seasoning

1 -2 tsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
pinch of asafoetida powder.
2 red chillies

Ingredients to roast and grind to paste  make Udupi Rasam immediately ( if you do not have bulk Rasam powder in hand )

4 -5 red chillies   ( use variety like Byadagi , Guntur. )
2-3  tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1-2 tsp coconut oil for roasting ingredients
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds/methi
1/4 cup  or 2 tbsp   grated fresh coconut .( use desiccated powder if fresh is not available )
( coconut is added in most Udupi dishes and coconut oil is also the predominant flavor)

In a pan add some coconut oil enough to roast the above with coconut  and a pinch of asafoetida powder,  taking care not to darken the ingredients while roasting. Let it cool and grind to paste, keep aside to be added to boiling rasam mixture later.

Method to make rasam./ saaru

Extract water from tamrind ,  nearly 2  1/2 cups , add the chopped tomatoes, green chillies pinch of turmeric powder, asafoetida powder  salt, some curry leaves.

When the tomatoes have softened and the mixture slightly thickening, add the boiled cooked dal , the ground rasam powder paste  with more water to dilute it. This recipe with ground paste makes a little thick rasam, so you need to dilute it .

Let it boil gently till a bit frothy. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
Switch off immediately.
Prepare the  tempering by heating coconut oil, splutter mustard seeds, curry leaves  and asafoetida powder, pour into the hot rasam, cover quickly to keep the aroma .


For bulk rasam powder  preparation coconut is usually not added to keep the freshness of the ingredients, it can be added at the time of making fresh rasam.

Even without adding coconut, Ududpi rasam has a great flavor and taste.
Adding jaggery is optional, though it is the key ingredient to this rasam.

Udupi rasam  powder ( saarina pudi ) 

200 grams Coriander seeds
50 grams Fenugreek seeds/ methi seeds
150 grams Red chilies ( Guntur and byadagi variety, adjust quantity of red chillies to suit your taste. )
50 grams Cumin seeds
 20 Curry leaves
50 ml  Coconut oil

In a pan add some coconut oil and individually fry each ingredient .
Let it cool down , grind to powder.
Store  in an airtight container. Use this powder when ever you need to make Udupi style rasam.

Serve with hot rice and ghee and a pallya( cooked dry vegetables are called pallya in Kannada).