Hello, Good News! Welcome to another article where we share with you some of the best recipes from around the world. Today, we are going to talk about Shringeri Rasam, a traditional South Indian soup that is tangy, spicy, and aromatic. Shringeri Rasam is a popular dish in the state of Karnataka, especially in the town of Shringeri, which is known for its ancient temple and spiritual heritage. Shringeri Rasam is also called Shringara Rasam, which means “rasam of love” or “rasam of beauty”. It is believed that this rasam was first prepared by the devotees of the goddess Sharada, who is worshipped in the Shringeri temple.
Shringeri Rasam is made with toor dal (split pigeon peas), tomatoes, tamarind, rasam powder, and a tempering of mustard seeds, cumin seeds, dried red chilies, curry leaves, and asafoetida. It has a rich and complex flavor that balances the sourness of tamarind, the sweetness of tomatoes, the spiciness of rasam powder, and the nuttiness of toor dal. Shringeri Rasam is usually served with hot steamed rice, but it can also be enjoyed as a soup or a drink. It is a great dish to have during cold weather or when you are feeling under the weather, as it helps to clear the nasal passages and soothe the throat.
What is Rasam and How is it Different from Other Soups?
Rasam is a type of soup that originated in South India and is an integral part of the cuisine. Rasam means “juice” or “essence” in Tamil and Telugu languages, and it refers to the thin and watery consistency of the soup. Rasam is usually made with tamarind or lemon juice as the base, along with various spices and herbs. Sometimes, lentils or vegetables are also added to rasam to make it more filling and nutritious.
Rasam is different from other soups in several ways. First of all, rasam is not thickened with any flour or cream, but relies on the natural starch from the lentils or vegetables to give it some body. Second, rasam is not blended or pureed, but has a chunky texture with whole spices and herbs. Third, rasam is not served as an appetizer or a starter, but as a main course along with rice or as a digestive aid after a heavy meal. Fourth, rasam has a unique flavor profile that combines sourness, spiciness, sweetness, and saltiness in a harmonious way.
Types of Rasam
There are many types of rasam that are prepared in different regions of South India. Some of the common ones are:
- Tomato Rasam: This is the simplest and most common type of rasam that is made with tomatoes, tamarind, rasam powder, and tempering. It has a bright red color and a tangy taste.
- Lemon Rasam: This is a refreshing type of rasam that is made with lemon juice instead of tamarind. It has a light yellow color and a citrusy flavor.
- Garlic Rasam: This is a spicy type of rasam that is made with lots of garlic cloves, black pepper, cumin seeds, and curry leaves. It has a dark brown color and a pungent aroma.
- Dal Rasam: This is a hearty type of rasam that is made with cooked toor dal (split pigeon peas), tomatoes, tamarind, rasam powder, and tempering. It has a pale yellow color and a creamy texture.
- Mysore Rasam: This is a special type of rasam that is made with coconut paste, roasted chana dal (split chickpeas), coriander seeds, dried red chilies, and tamarind. It has a light brown color and a nutty flavor.
Benefits of Rasam
Rasam is not only delicious but also healthy. Some of the benefits of rasam are:
- Boosts immunity: Rasam contains various spices and herbs that have anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties. These help to fight against infections and diseases and strengthen the immune system.
- Aids digestion: Rasam contains tamarind or lemon juice that are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants. These help to stimulate the production of saliva and gastric juices and improve the digestion and absorption of food.
- Hydrates the body: Rasam is mostly water and has a high content of electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. These help to replenish the fluids and minerals that are lost due to sweating or dehydration.
- Relieves congestion: Rasam contains hot and spicy ingredients such as black pepper, cumin seeds, ginger, garlic, and dried red chilies. These help to clear the nasal passages and the respiratory tract and ease the symptoms of cold, cough, sore throat, and sinusitis.
- Enhances mood: Rasam has a soothing and comforting effect on the mind and body. It helps to reduce stress, anxiety, depression, and fatigue and uplifts the mood.
How to Make Shringeri Rasam at Home?
Shringeri Rasam is one of the most delicious and flavorful types of rasam that you can make at home. It is not very difficult or time-consuming to prepare, and it requires only a few basic ingredients that are easily available in any Indian grocery store. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make Shringeri Rasam at home:
To make Shringeri Rasam, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1/2 cup of toor dal (split pigeon peas)
- 2 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3–4 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 2 green chilies, slit lengthwise
- 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
- Salt to taste
- 4 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of oil
- 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
- A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- A few curry leaves
- 2–3 dried red chilies
- 2 tablespoons of tamarind pulp
- 2 teaspoons of rasam powder
- A handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
To make Shringeri Rasam, follow these steps:
- Wash the toor dal with water and add it to a pressure cooker along with the chopped onion, tomato, garlic, green chilies, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, salt, and 2 cups of water. Cook for 3–4 whistles or until the dal is soft and mushy.
- In a small pan, heat the oil and add the mustard seeds. When they start to crackle, add the asafoetida, curry leaves, and dried red chilies and fry for a few seconds. This is the tempering for the rasam.
- In a large pot, bring the remaining 2 cups of water to a boil and add the tamarind pulp and rasam powder. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the raw smell of tamarind goes away.
- Mash the cooked dal with a ladle or a blender and add it to the boiling tamarind water. Mix well and adjust the salt if needed.
- Add the tempering to the rasam and simmer for another 5 minutes or until frothy.
- Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or as a soup.
Nutritional Facts of Shringeri Rasam
Shringeri Rasam is a low-calorie and high-protein dish that is suitable for people who are watching their weight or following a vegetarian or vegan diet. It also provides various vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fiber that are essential for good health. Here is a table that shows the nutritional facts of Shringeri Rasam per serving (1 cup):
|Nutrient|Amount|% Daily Value|
|Total Fat|5 g|8%|
|Saturated Fat|0.5 g|3%|
|Trans Fat|0 g|0%|
|Total Carbohydrate|15 g|5%|
|Dietary Fiber|4 g|16%|
FAQs about Shringeri Rasam
Here are some of the frequently asked questions about Shringeri Rasam and their answers:
What is the difference between Shringeri Rasam and Sambar?
Shringeri Rasam and Sambar are both South Indian soups that are made with toor dal, tamarind, and spices. However, they have some differences in their ingredients, consistency, and taste. Sambar is thicker and more like a stew, as it contains more dal and vegetables. It also uses sambar powder, which has more spices such as fenugreek seeds, coriander seeds, and curry leaves. Shringeri Rasam is thinner and more like a broth, as it contains less dal and no vegetables. It uses rasam powder, which has fewer spices such as cumin seeds, black pepper, and garlic.
How to make rasam powder at home?
Rasam powder is a spice mix that is used to make rasam. It can be easily made at home by roasting and grinding the following ingredients:
- 1/4 cup of coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoons of cumin seeds
- 2 tablespoons of black peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon of toor dal (split pigeon peas)
- 1 tablespoon of chana dal (split chickpeas)
- 10–12 dried red chilies
- A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- A few curry leaves
Dry roast the ingredients separately in a pan over low heat until they turn aromatic and golden. Cool them completely and grind them to a fine powder in a blender or a spice grinder. Store the rasam powder in an airtight container and use as required.
How to make tamarind pulp at home?
Tamarind pulp is a sour and sticky paste that is extracted from the pods of the tamarind tree. It is used to add tanginess and flavor to many dishes, especially rasam. It can be made at home by following these steps:
- Soak a lemon-sized ball of tamarind in 1 cup of warm water for 15–20 minutes or until soft.
- Squeeze the tamarind with your fingers to release the pulp and strain the liquid through a sieve.
- Discard the seeds and fibers and use the tamarind pulp as required.
How to store Shringeri Rasam?
Shringeri Rasam can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, thaw the frozen rasam in the refrigerator overnight or in the microwave for a few minutes. Then, transfer it to a pot and bring it to a boil on the stove. You may need to add some water if the rasam is too thick or some salt if the rasam is too bland.
How to serve Shringeri Rasam?
Shringeri Rasam can be served in various ways depending on your preference and occasion. Some of the common ways are:
- With rice: This is the most traditional way of serving rasam. You can mix some rasam with hot steamed rice and enjoy it with some papadum (crispy lentil wafers) or pickle on the side.
- As a soup: This is a simple way of serving rasam. You can pour some rasam into a bowl and sip it with a spoon or drink it from a cup. You can also add some croutons or breadsticks for some crunch.
- As a drink: This is a refreshing way of serving rasam. You can chill some rasam in the refrigerator and serve it in a glass with some ice cubes and mint leaves. You can also add some lemon juice or honey for some extra flavor.
What are some variations of Shringeri Rasam?
Shringeri Rasam is a versatile dish that can be modified according to your taste and availability of ingredients. Some of the possible variations are:
- Pineapple Rasam: This is a fruity version of rasam that is made with pineapple juice instead of tamarind pulp. It has a sweet and sour taste that goes well with rice or as a drink.
- Pepper Rasam: This is a spicy version of rasam that is made with extra black pepper and ginger. It has a warming and soothing effect that is good for colds and coughs.
- Mint Rasam: This is a refreshing version of rasam that is made with fresh mint leaves and lemon juice. It has a cooling and cleansing effect that is good for digestion and detoxification.
What are some dishes that go well with Shringeri Rasam?
Shringeri Rasam can be paired with various dishes to make a complete and satisfying meal. Some of the dishes that go well with Shringeri Rasam are:
- Plain Rice: This is the simplest and most common accompaniment for rasam. You can also add some ghee (clarified butter) or butter to the rice for some extra richness.
- Curd Rice: This is a cooling and comforting dish that is made with cooked rice and yogurt. It helps to balance the spiciness of rasam and also provides some probiotics for gut health.
- Vegetable Stir-Fry: This is a healthy and colorful dish that is made with various vegetables such as carrots, beans, peas, cauliflower, broccoli, etc. It adds some crunch and fiber to the meal and also provides some vitamins and minerals.
- Dal Fry: This is a creamy and flavorful dish that is made with cooked lentils and spices. It adds some protein and iron to the meal and also complements the taste of rasam.
- Potato Curry: This is a hearty and delicious dish that is made with boiled potatoes and a tomato-onion gravy. It adds some starch and energy to the meal and also goes well with rasam.
What are some tips and tricks to make Shringeri Rasam better?
Shringeri Rasam is a simple dish that can be easily made at home. However, there are some tips and tricks that can help you make it better and more authentic. Here are some of them:
- Use fresh ingredients: Use fresh tomatoes, tamarind, garlic, green chilies, curry leaves, and coriander leaves for the best flavor and aroma. Avoid using canned or processed ingredients as they may have preservatives or additives that can alter the taste of rasam.
- Roast the spices: Roast the cumin seeds, mustard seeds, dried red chilies, and asafoetida in oil before adding them to the rasam. This will enhance their flavor and also prevent them from burning or spluttering.
- Adjust the consistency: Adjust the consistency of rasam according to your preference by adding more or less water. If you like your rasam thin and watery, add more water. If you like your rasam thick and creamy, add less water or more dal.
- Adjust the seasoning: Adjust the seasoning of rasam according to your taste by adding more or less salt, tamarind pulp, rasam powder, or sugar. If you like your rasam sour, add more tamarind pulp. If you like your rasam spicy, add more rasam powder or green chilies. If you like your rasam sweet, add some sugar or jaggery (unrefined cane sugar).
- Garnish with coriander leaves: Garnish your rasam with some chopped coriander leaves before serving. This will add some freshness and color to your rasam and also boost its nutritional value.
Shringeri Rasam is a delicious and nutritious South Indian soup that can be enjoyed in various ways. It is easy to make at home with simple ingredients and has many health benefits. It is also a versatile dish that can be modified according to your taste and availability of ingredients. We hope you enjoyed this article on Shringeri Rasam recipe and learned something new. If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to leave a comment below. Also, don’t forget to check out our other articles on amazing recipes from around the world. Thank you for reading!