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Rasam soup


Serves: 4 as a light meal
timePrep time: 20 mins
timeTotal time:
Rasam soup
Recipe photograph by Kris Kirkham
The meaning of rasam is “juice”, but in Southern India, the word refers to a salty and sour soup flavoured with spices

Serves: 4 as a light meal
timePrep time: 20 mins
timeTotal time:

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Nutritional information (per serving)
Calories
312Kcal
Fat
27gr
Saturates
15gr
Carbs
13gr
Sugars
11gr
Fibre
3gr
Protein
3gr
Salt
0gr

Hrishikesh Desai

Hrishikesh Desai

Indian-born Hrishikesh has been executive chef at the Gilpin Hotel in the Lake District since 2015, after winning BBC2 series Chefs On Trial, which helps restaurants find head chefs. Just a year after taking the helm of the hotel’s two restaurants, he won its first Michelin star in 2016 
See more of Hrishikesh Desai ’s recipes
Hrishikesh Desai

Hrishikesh Desai

Indian-born Hrishikesh has been executive chef at the Gilpin Hotel in the Lake District since 2015, after winning BBC2 series Chefs On Trial, which helps restaurants find head chefs. Just a year after taking the helm of the hotel’s two restaurants, he won its first Michelin star in 2016 
See more of Hrishikesh Desai ’s recipes

Ingredients

For the base
  • 3 small shallots, finely chopped
  • 5g fresh curry leaves or ½ x 3g jar dried curry leaves
  • 1 large green chilli, chopped (deseeded if you wish)
  • 2cm chunk of root ginger, roughly chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
For the soup
  • 50ml vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp brown mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • a small pinch of fenugreek seeds or ground fenugreek
  • 10 fresh or dried curry leaves
  • 1kg ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • 1 pinch asafoetida, optional
  • 100g tamarind water
  • 1 x 400g tin coconut milk
  • caster sugar, to taste
  • lemon juice, to taste
  • ½ x 30g pack coriander, leaves finely chopped

Step by step

  1. Pound the shallots, curry leaves, green chilli, ginger and garlic together using a large pestle and mortar, adding a pinch of flaky salt to help it along. You can use an electric blender or mini food processor, but using a pestle and mortar gives more flavour.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a wide-based pan on a medium heat. Add the mustard seeds, allow to splutter, then add the cumin and fenugreek seeds. Cook until golden brown (if using ground fenugreek, add this in the next step).
  3. Add the curry leaves and then the crushed base mixture. Cook to a light golden-brown colour, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes to sizzle and deglaze the pan, bringing all the flavours of the spices together. Add the turmeric, ground coriander and asafoetida (if using) and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add the tamarind water, 400ml water and the coconut milk, and bring to the boil. Cook for 15 minutes or until the tomatoes have broken down. Add extra water if the soup is looking too thick.
  6. Reduce the heat, season with salt and sugar, and taste. If the tamarind hasn’t given enough acidity, add some lemon juice to evenly balance the salt, sugar and acids. There should be a balanced harmony of flavours and a gentle kick of heat. Portion into cups or bowls, garnish with coriander leaves and serve immediately.
    Tip
    To make tamarind water, you can use either tamarind paste from a jar (use 1 tbsp for 100ml water), or make it from a slab of pulp (soak a walnut-sized lump in 150ml boiling water, then strain). Find in the world food aisles. 

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