Tomato Rasam is a south Indian dish that's tangy, spicy, and delicious, almost like a soup. This vegan dish is made with fresh tomatoes and a few pantry spices and has no onions or garlic.
In South India, it is also referred to as thakkali rasam and tomato charu. Despite various versions of rasam available in South India, this is the quickest, simplest recipe and most importantly the tastiest recipe. This dish is made without dal/lentils, tamarind pulp, onion, or garlic, making it a time and energy saver dish.
A combination of pre-made rasam powder and a fresh blend of coriander and coconut is used in this tomato rasam recipe. When you feel too lazy to cook or don't have any veggies, this recipe can be your savior. There's no better meal to have when weekdays are hectic than rasam, rice, and appalam. Adding pickles like Andhra ginger chutney or tomato pachadi would elevate your meal.
A glass of piping hot rasam not only soothes cold, flu but provides relief from congestion and sore throat. The warmth of this dish combined with the beneficial properties of spices relieves the feeling of being under the weather during winter days.
Whole spices to grind: Coriander seeds and desiccated coconut.
Vegetables and Herbs: Fresh tomatoes, curry leaves, green chillies, red chilies, fresh coriander leaves
Liquid: Water and oil. I have used sunflower oil but feel free to use sesame oil, coconut oil or other cooking oil of your choice.
See the recipe card for quantities.
How to make tomato rasam?
Roast coriander seeds in a pan or skillet over medium-low heat for 3-4 minutes or until they become aromatic.
Turn off the heat and wait for the seeds to cool down completely.
In the meantime, boil water in the kettle and set it aside.
Put the coriander seeds in the mixer jar and mix in desiccated coconut.
Make sure to grind it into a powder and set it aside to use later.
In a steel pot, heat 2 teaspoons of oil over medium heat.
As soon as the oil is hot, fry half a teaspoon mustard seeds and half a teaspoon cumin seeds for a minute until the mustard splutters.
Fry green and red chillies for a few seconds.
Stir in asafoetida and curry leaves, then saute for one minute.
Mix together chopped tomatoes and half teaspoon turmeric powder, stir until well combined.
First, cook the tomatoes until they are soft, and then mash them with a potato masher.
Pour boiling water from the kettle.
Add rasam powder, jaggery powder, and salt, then stir the mixture.
Allow the pot to simmer on the stovetop for 10 minutes.
Add freshly ground coriander coconut powder and chopped coriander leaves to boiling rasam, then turn off the heat.
Serve tomato rasam with a bowl of steamed rice and any side dish of your choice.
Substitutions and Variations
Spicy: To make it spicier, add extra chillies or half a teaspoon black pepper powder.
Curry Leaves: Due to the unavailability of fresh curry leaves at the nearby grocery store, I had to use dried ones for this easy tomato rasam recipe. Fresh sprig curry leaves enhance the taste of rasam. If available, use it.
Gluten Free: Ensure to use gluten free asafoetida. Asafoetida is naturally gluten free. However, be cautious while buying and check the label as commercially available brands may contain gluten.
Serving it as soup is an excellent way to have it as an appetiser.
Impress your guests by serving it innovatively at parties - as an appetizer in small glasses, rasam vada, rasam bonda, or soup.
Fridge: If you keep this rasam in a clean airtight container, it will stay good in the fridge for 3-4 days.
Reheat: Place the sambar in a microwave-safe bowl and reheat it in a microwave until hot. You can heat it on the stovetop by placing it in a saucepan and stirring regularly over medium heat.
Tips and Tricks
Adjust the spices to match your taste.
To get the best taste and flavor, use fresh tomatoes that are juicy and well-ripened.
Do not use tomato puree or tinned tomatoes as they spoil the taste due to their high salt content and tartness.
Do not skip jaggery as it helps balance out the tangy and spiciness of rasam.
A homemade spice blend brings in fresh flavours and aroma. In case you're unable to prepare your own or have no more home made rasam powder left, store-bought is a good option.
If you have leftover rasam from the party and don't want to eat it in the coming days, consider freezing it. Before storing leftover rasam in the freezer, divide it into required portions and transfer it to freezer-safe containers.
Thaw the rasam the night before you intend to consume it. Transfer a portion from the freezer to the fridge. Heat up in a saucepan over medium heat on the stovetop until it's piping hot.
More South Indian Recipes
Ven pongal: A classic south Indian special dish prepared with rice, moong dal, a few essential spices and ghee.
Sweet pongal: A sweet prepared with rice, moong dal, jaggery, dry fruits, ghee and flavoured with cardamom and edible camphor.
Tomato bath: Vegan, gluten-free and flavourful rice dish made with tomato, coconut, herbs and spice-based ground masala.
Bisibelebath: A delicious pot meal made of rice, lentils, vegetables and a special spice blend.
Vegetable Chettinad: a flavourful vegan Indian curry made with homemade chettinad masala.
KEEP IN TOUCH
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📖 Recipe Card
Tomato Rasam without Dal and Tamarind
1 Cup = 250ml ; 1 Tablespoon = 15ml ; 1 Teaspoon = 5ml
- 2 Tablespoons Coriander Seeds
- 2 Tablespoons Desiccated Coconut
- 1 Tablespoon Oil
- ½ Teaspoon Mustard
- ½ Teaspoon Cumin
- ½ Teaspoon Urad Dal
- 2 Red Chillies each broken into 2-3 pieces
- 2 Green Chillies each cut into 2-3 pieces
- Handful Curry Leaves
- A pinch Asafoetida/ Hing
- ½ Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 3 Medium Fresh Tomatoes each cut into half, each half sliced into 3-4 pieces
- 4.5 Cups Water
- 1.5 Tablespoons Rasam Powder
- ½ Teaspoon Jaggery Powder
- Handful Fresh Coriander Leaves chopped
- Salt as required
- Roast coriander seeds in a pan or skillet over medium-low heat for 3-4 minutes or until they become aromatic.2 Tablespoons Coriander Seeds
- Turn off the heat and wait for the seeds to cool down completely.
- In the meantime, boil water in the kettle and set it aside.4.5 Cups Water
- Put the coriander seeds in the mixer jar and mix in desiccated coconut.2 Tablespoons Desiccated Coconut
- Make sure to grind it into a powder and set it aside to use later.
- In a steel pot, heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat.1 Tablespoon Oil
- As soon as the oil is hot, fry half a teaspoon mustard seeds and half a teaspoon cumin seeds for a minute until the mustard splutters.½ Teaspoon Mustard, ½ Teaspoon Cumin, ½ Teaspoon Urad Dal
- Fry green and red chillies for a few seconds.2 Red Chillies, 2 Green Chillies
- Stir in asafoetida and curry leaves, then saute for one minute.Handful Curry Leaves, A pinch Asafoetida/ Hing
- Mix together chopped tomatoes and half teaspoon turmeric powder, stir until well combined.3 Medium Fresh Tomatoes, ½ Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- First, cook the tomatoes until they are soft, and then mash them with a potato masher.
- Pour boiling water from the kettle.
- Add rasam powder, jaggery powder, and salt, then stir the mixture.1.5 Tablespoons Rasam Powder, ½ Teaspoon Jaggery Powder, Salt
- Allow the pot to simmer on the stovetop for 10 minutes.
- Add freshly ground coriander coconut powder and chopped coriander leaves to boiling rasam, then turn off the heat.Handful Fresh Coriander Leaves
- Serve tomato rasam with a bowl of steamed rice and any side dish of your choice.
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Welcome to Flavours Treat. I share vegetarian recipes made with wholesome, mostly fresh ingredients. Every recipe has easy-to-follow instructions with process shots (detailed step-wise pictures), a short video and lots of tips to help your cooking journey. Read more