Saturday, January 22, 2011

Rasam and Rice

I recently bought a Rasam mix at the nearby international (Indian) store. I mixed it up according to the directions with tomato, using 1-  15 oz. can of diced tomatoes. While it was a little too hot for our tastes (being labeled medium spice), as well as a little too tangy or sour (maybe from the tamarind), I decided to try to salvage it and remake it into something we could finish. Here is my experiment, which I think turned out quite well. I recognize that there are many different variations of Rasam (which can be a soup or a sauce over rice). The brand I tried that I felt needed a little help to suit our tastes was "Gits Rasam Mix". I am in the process of trying to make my own rasam mix- trying various recipes online. I also served this with brown rice, which gave it a wonderful flavor.

1 Rasam mix prepared according to directions, except as mentioned above- with can of tomatoes
2 large potatoes, peeled if desired, and chopped
1  15 oz. can of chickpeas, drained
1  15 oz. can of light kidney beans or pink beans, drained
2-3 large kale leaves, rinsed and chopped (or other chopped greens)
2 Tbsp sugar or xylitol (if using this brand of rasam mix)
1 large onion, chopped
3 Tbsp oil
2 tsp curry powder (not hot)
3/4 cup plain yogurt
cottage cheese (optional)
rice (brown or white), cooked

In a medium-large pot, combine the onions, oil and curry powder. Cook, stirring together frequently, until onions are soft. Then add the rasam mix, water, sugar and tomatoes, stirring together well. Add the potatoes, beans and kale or greens. Bring to a boil and then lower to simmer for the next 15 minutes, stirring frequently.  As the mixture cooks, it should thicken slightly. Cook the rice according to directions. After the rasam mixture has finished, take out some rasam juice and add to yogurt in a bowl, stirring well and then adding back into the rasam pot. Serve over rice with a spoonful or two of cottage cheese over top/mixed in.

We also tried the above with a fried egg- over easy or very soft yolk- over top of the rasam and rice. This was a great added flavor!

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