A South Indian's ultimate comfort food is undoubtedly the Saattru-amudhu @ Rasam, colloquially Saathamudhu. "Saaru aka Sattru" means juice and "Amudhu" - means Nectar = Saattru Amudhu thus pronounced. And, of course this is the second best of elixirs next to Buttermilk. This Lentil soup is almost an everyday delight in South Indian homes. With a little one around, I always make sure to prepare Sattramudhu and this has become a daily ritual for the past one year. 

The tomato rasam is the most common and the one below. This apart, there are different varities in tomato rasams and several other close cousins with/without tomatoes and using other veggies/fruits.

The procedure of making a Saattramudhu/ Rasam is very simple... but the aroma emanating from this Indian soup can trigger hunger pangs within microseconds. Hot rice, a dollop of ghee and two good servings of this fragrant soup paired with any Spicy vegetable curry (scroll down below the recipe for some pairing options) is always a winner. Ask any South Indian and he/she will nod in affirmation. As I already mentioned in my previous post about me using conventional utensils, the cooking method is evident from the pictures. I used the same Earthen Kadai for Mullu Katharikkaai Kariyamuthu and Sathamudhu. Talking about the nutritional benefits, Sathanudhu/ Rasam is ideal because it:
  • Is an introductory weaning food for babies and is a healthy option during pregnancy.
  • Provides good amount of fluids and prevents constipation.
  • Contains a good dose of pepper, coriander, mustard seeds, turmeric and asafoetida that can naturally reduce insulin resistance.
  • Many researches have spoken positively about Indian spices and cooking methods that keep cancer at bay. 
Enough said. Now scroll down for the recipe.

Preparation time: 20 min
Cooking time: 10 min
Category: Main course 
Cuisine: South Indian
Spice Level: Moderate/ Spicy
Difficulty Level: Easy
Serves : 4-5
Source: MIL
Nutrition Facts
Servings 5.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 129
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2 g3 %
Saturated Fat 1 g3 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 3 mg1 %
Sodium 197 mg8 %
Potassium 90 mg3 %
Total Carbohydrate 21 g7 %
Dietary Fiber 3 g10 %
Sugars 2 g
Protein 7 g15 %
Vitamin A2 %
Vitamin C7 %
Calcium2 %
Iron4 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.
  • 3/4th cup Red gram dhal/ Toor Dhal
  • 2 medium sized tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tamarind extract
  • 2 1/2 tsp Homemade Rasam powder
  • 2 + 1+1/2 cup water
  • 1 inch piece fresh turmeric/ 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves ( torn)
  • 2 sprigs coriander leaves ( chopped fine)
  • 2-3 flakes of compounded asafoetida
  • 1 tsp ghee/ clarified butter
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 dry red chillies
  • 1 tsp pounded jaggery
  • Rock salt to taste
  • few drops of castor oil
  • Wash  and clean Toor Dhal. Add 2 cups of water, chopped turmeric/ turmeric powder, castor oil and pressure cook upto 3-4 whistles or until done.
  • Churn with a whisk and set aside until use. 
  • Soak tamarind (gooseberry sized) with very little water and extract about 2 tbsp of extract.
  • In a thick bottomed vessel add 1 cup water, chopped tomatoes+ compounded asafoetida. Cover with a lid and cook until the tomatoes turn soft and juicy and until Asafoetida dissolves and infuses well with water.
  • Add the tamarind extract and cook until the raw flavour disappears and the mixture starts to bubble. Now add cooked dhal, rock salt, add jaggery and add 1/ cup water. Mix well and keep the flame simmered.
  • When the mixture starts to fume add Rasam powder and chopped coriander leaves. The mixture will bubble up and froth. Cook for just one more minute and turn the heat off.
  • Heat ghee in a pan. When hot add mustard seeds. When they pop add cumin seeds. When it sizzles add the red chillies and curry leaves.... cook for few seconds and pour it into the Saattrumudhu/Rasam. Close with a lid and rest for few minutes. 
  • Serve hot with hot rice and any accompaniment of your choice. 
  • When you rest Paruppu Sathamudhu /Rasam for a while, you should be able to see a sizable quantity of clear rasam soup (without the sediments) on top and the dhal settled at the bottom. Make sure to stir every time to blend with the spice sediments.
  • Once you temper Rasam with spices, close the utensil with a lid immediately. This prevents flavour loss.

If you are looking for more Rasam recipes and accompaniments, I have listed out a few with the links. Click on the title to read the recipe.
Rasam, being a traditional home menu everyday, is always settled upon for a quick meal. This variety using gooseberries is simply appetizing, flavoursome and mellow !!!

Feeling tired? No mood for elaborate cooking? Want something quick and spicy? Then, please go for this Mangalore Rasam with some Spicy Potato curry. You 'll thank yourself for trying this.

Looking for spicy accompaniments? Here are a few.

Potatoes, Taro, Yam, Tender plantains -  what would you choose to have with Rasam or Dhal? Lets vote !!
This Taro is one favourite in South Iindian menu - be it home or other festive occasions such as weddings, parties/kitties or traditional home functions.

Can I call this recipe Egg plant Elixir? Your family and guests will be super impressed if you treat them. Check out the recipe.

This South Indian style Urulaikizhangu Kaara curry/ Kariamuthu is sure to be celebrated by you and your family and goes well with anything. It also serves as a good starter. 


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