Time we visited the coastal Karnataka after reveling in the land of mangoes for a festive cuisine …. Udupi rasam! No meal offered in the Udupi temples/Dharmasthala or any of the Brahmin Mangalorean wedding feast is complete without the famous Udupi rasam. The specialty of the rasam powder for this is the inclusion of mustard seeds as also fenugreek seeds. Furthermore, the ingredients are roasted in a generous amount of coconut oil and often the tempering is also done in coconut oil. Naturally with so much of coconut flavor to it, fresh coconut is only optional. The powder is made in bulk and used for other stir fry dishes too. I used coconut oil minimally to roast the condiments and I love the aroma of ghee in tempering; so tempering in ghee. To balance the heat from the chilies I used coconut and also jaggery. Byadagi chilli is used to give the vibrant color and one can use a mix of normal red chilies and Byadagi chilies to give color and taste.
This recipe is adapted from the recipe from Chitra Amma’s Kitchen
Tamarind 1 lemon/gooseberry sized ball or 1 tbsp of pulp
Green chili 1 (slit)
Arahar dal 2 tbsp (to be pressure cooked)
Turmeric powder ½ tsp
Tomato 2 medium-sized
Fresh coconut 1 tbsp (grated)
Curry leaves frpom 3 sprigs
Salt 1 tsp or as per taste
Jaggery powder ½ tsp
Ghee 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds 1 tsp
Asafotida ¼ tsp
Water 4 cups
For rasam powder
Red chillies 4
Byadage chilies 4
Coriander seeds 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds 1tsp
Urad dal 1 tsp
Coconut oil ¼ tsp
Mustard seeds 1/3 tsp
Fenugreek seeds ¼ tsp
- Add turmeric powder to the washed arahar dal and pressure cook the dal for 4 whistles.
- For rasam powder: In a wide and thick-bottomed pan add the mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds and dry roast till the color starts changing to brown. Remove from fire and transfer to a platter to cool.
Add the coconut oil to the same pan and roast the chilies, followed by cumin seeds, coriander seeds and urad dal. As the aroma is released switch off the flame and transfer to the platter to cool down.
Powder the roasted condiments to a slightly coarse texture.
- Blanch the tomato in hot water or by microwaving for a minute. Blend the blanched tomato, coconut and curry leaves to a smooth paste.
- Extract the pulp from tamarind soaked in warm water into the cooking vessel or add the ready pulp and make up the volume to 1 cup. Add salt and slit chilly and keep it on slow fire till the raw smell of tamarind is gone.
- Add the mashed dal and tomato-coconut paste to the vessel and make up the volume to 1 liter.
- When the mix starts boiling add the rasam powder, asafotida, and jaggery. Switch off the flame when the mix starts boiling and gets frothy.
- Temper the mustard seeds and transfer to the ready rasam.
Normally this rasam uses coconut oil for tempering and those who love strong coconut flavor can use coconut oil. The condiments are also roasted (fried?) in a fairly large scoop of oil
Red chili is commonly used in tempering but I decided to skip it.