Pomegranate Rasam (Spicy pomegranate lentil soup)
Pomegranate-BBC news calls this the fruity panacea. Packed with anti-oxidants (note the ruby red colour), it's known to protect the heart, prevent prostate cancer, reduce LDL (the bad cholesterol). It's rich in ACE Vitamins and iron, and no wonder doctors and many others are recommending a glass of pomegranate juice as a part of everyone's diet
Fortunately, it's available in India pretty much all the year round and this is one fruit, the more I read about it, the more I am convinced of it's goodness.
Guess what I did with these ruby red seeds??
Thanks to all those who took part in the guessing game. This time, no one came close to guessing though - probably because the veteran guessers like Priya, Neelu, Sumitha, Priya (Akshayapaatram), Sudha, Lalitha, Krishna Arjuna etc didn't make attempts :)
The picture at the top reveals what I made with the pomegranate seeds- Rasam indeed.
Rasam is soul-food for any Tamilian. Be it a simple tomato rasam or the more exotic varieties like Mysore Rasam, Lemon Rasam or the fruity varieties made with pineapple, pomegranate, mangoes and so on.
Pomegranate Rasam (Spicy pomegranate lentil soup):
- Place the shelled fruit in a mixer with some water. Grind well to extract juice and strain using a tea strainer. Keep the juice aside. This will come roughly to 3/4 cup.
- Remove tamarind extract-to make upto 1 cup and keep aside.
- In a pot/ a heavy bottomed vessel, place the mashed toor dal. Add a pinch of turmeric powder, pinch of asafoetida, rasam powder, salt, jaggery and the tamarind extract. Mix well and let it come to a rolling boil. Let it boil for 2-3 min. Take the vessel off the flame.
- In a tadka ladle, heat the ghee. In hot ghee, add the ingredients for tadka. When they begin to crackle, put it into the rasam pot. Add the pomegranate juice and keep covered until you serve.This rasam is bursting with flavours- sweet, tangy, spicy. Served piping hot on a rainy day- it is heavenly bliss.
Rasam powder is a grounded mix of red chillies, coriander seeds, red gram dal, peppercorns and cumin seeds. Every home has it's own recipe for rasam powder. I just borrow a bottle from mom.
~You may garnish with finely chopped coriander
~Rasam can be served as an appetising soup or to be eaten with rice and ghee
~Some freshly cracked black pepper on the top can make this an ideal home remedy for the sniffles. Call it the vegetarian's chicken soup :D
~Mango / Pineapple / Lemon rasam can be made in a similar fashion. Idea is not to boil the rasam after the fruit juice has been added
I present this recipe for the following events:
Cate's ARF Tuesdays since Pomegranate is one of the richest foods when it comes to AOs
Revathy's FMR #7 -Comfort food as I was brought up on simple homely food like this
Indira's recipe for tomato rasam.
This recipe has taken inspiration from my grand-aunt -Mythili mami in Chennai who probably makes the most amazing traditional Tamil food.
Disclaimer: Any resemblance in recipe idea, pictures, words is purely co-incidental.