Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Tomato Rasam recipe

There really is no better and more comforting side dishes for me. I think the reason why is that it was one of the first REAL Indian dishes that i had tried. It was steaming hot, served on top of fluffy basmati rice with fresh green coriander sprinkled over the top. This was also the first time that i had ever tried fresh coriander too. I had fallen in love instantly with real Indian food and I just wanted more, but I was to polite and shy to ask, as their was a family of three boy's and two adults in the house to feed, so I think that at first they were being polite when they fed me, so I did not ask for more. The lady that cooked this meal for her family was an absolute genius and a complete inspiration to me. I really wish that I took up the many invitations to learn how to cook these spectacular dishes, but of course the situation at the time was difficult to say the least, so like a plum, I never did except the once in a life time opportunity and learn from the best, but we learn from our life experiences and we can only correct them when we realise that we can. Take every opportunity as you can and live life to the full, no mater what your passion is it is achievable even if you know nothing from the start. Here is my attempt of learning from scratch to absolute comfort.

Ingredients:-

4 tbs of red lentils - rinsed, boiled and puréed in a blender. (This is untraditional in this recipe but I think that it add extra flavour and health benefits.)
1 tbs oil and 1 tsp ghee
1/2 tsp of mustard seeds
3/4 tsp cumin seeds
1-2 dried red chilli's
4-6 cloves
2 green cardamom pods
1 1/2 inch piece of cinnamon or cassia bark
1 tsp ginger purée
3/4 tsp garlic purée
1 green chilli
about 10-13 curry leaves
1/4- 1/2 tsp hing (asafoetida)
3 tbs freshly chopped coriander
3-4 medium tomatoes peeled and chopped finely
1/2 tsp of kashmiri chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp of home-made rasam powder or to taste.
2 tsp of sugar, or 1 tsp of jaggery
1 tsp of tamarind paste or to taste

Directions:-

1) Heat the oil on a medium heat in a pan and add the mustard seed and wait until they pop.

2) Add the hing and let it sizzle,

2) Then add the cumin seeds, red chilli, cloves, cardamoms, cinnamon, garlic, ginger, green chilli, curry leaves and stir for about 30 seconds off the heat to make sure that the mixture does not burn.

3) Then add the fresh coriander and stir fry until the coriander wilts.

4) Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until all nice and pulpy and the oil separates.

5) Add the rest of the powdered spices and cook for another minute.

6) Add the sugar or jaggery and add your desired amount of water. Maybe around 1-2 pints depending on how you like it.

7) Add the tamarind and green coriander, mix and check the seasoning.

Serve as a soup or on top of rice.

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