Monday, February 16, 2009

Rasam Podi - Home-made and Iyer style

Rasam is the quintessential soup of South India. Traditional ‘Iyer athu’ Rasams are delectable, owing to the special powder that is ground and stored at home. However, Mum always used her Sambar Powder to make Rasams, and trust me, those are incredibly heavenly too, the extra ingredients being just the Channa Dal and Fenugreek. Some households use the Sambar Powder for cooking Rasams.

Mum-in-law, however, uses a Rasam Powder. Mum-in-law always cooks the ‘Arachu vita sambar’ which requires freshly ground Sambar Podi along with coconut. So, there’s no traditional Sambar Powder that she uses. And she prefers using this Rasam Powder which is also awesome. Strangely, both the mothers make similar Rasams with different powders!

Here’s mum-in-law’s amazing Rasam Powder recipe. She makes batches with extra spice just for me, what a darling! I still sometimes need to add a green chili or some red chili powder or black pepper corns, but largely, it works without anything extra. And topping it off with the fresh ground jeera powder as mentioned in our previous post on Rasam Tips just makes it out of the world. As it is mum-in-law’s recipe fills the house with the wonderful aroma of jeeragam. Jeeragam is the only ingredient that makes a world of a difference in Rasams.

1. Dry red chillies - 100 gms

2. Coriander seeds (Dhania) - 100 gms

3. Cumin seeds (Jeeragam) - 75 gms

4. Toor dal (Thuvaram paruppu) - 50 gms

5. Black pepper (Milagu) - 50 gms

6. Curry leaves (Karuvepla) - one handful

Dry roast each ingredient separately, one after the other, till they turn aromatic. Grind together and store.

Grinding it at home usually yields a coarse textured powder, unlike the powders you get from a professional mill. Sadly, we don’t have that luxury here in the US. We are close to finishing our first stock of Rasam Powder. S and I love Rasam, and as much as I was tempted to use the Sambar Powder to make Rasam, I was afraid that was getting over quickly too! So mum just sent me 15.3 kilos of goodies, including replenished stock of Rasam, Sambar and Chili Powders! This should keep me going for the next year.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. and generally rasam podi is supposed to be a bit coarse, the reason given is that if its a bit coarse then the consistency of rasam will be even(as patties say not much of ''vandal'' wl be there)

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  4. Thank You for the recipe, its really awesome,its long time that I was in search of this rasam powder.rasam taste very good. Once again i Thank you:)