Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Menasina Saaru / Pepper Rasam

There are some dishes that no one can make it better than your mother. That is so true for many dishes. I have eaten same dishes made by different people, even though their version is good too, it is not comparable to what my mom made. Is it blind love, or is it just that my palette was trained to like her cooking, I can't answer that. This Menasina Saaru or Pepper rasam is one of those.

My mother always roasted the ingredients and ground the masala for this. To make my life easier, I converted that recipe with some alterations to a powder. All I have to do is take enough water, mix it with the powder, add salt and let it boil. Menasina Saaru is ready. How easy is that? Here goes the recipe..

For the Powder:
Bengal gram dal / Kadale bele / Chana dal - 1/4 cup (This was added by me since I liked the way this addition turned out)
Urad dal / Uddina Bele - 1/2 cup
Black pepper / Menasu - 2 heaping TBSP or more as per your taste
Red Chillies - 10 or more
Hing - a pea size or if powder 1 tsp
Dry coconut / Kobbari - 3/4 cup - 1 cup grated.

In a skillet, dry roast all the ingredients except Hing. Do it on a low flame and keep stirring it to get even brown. Grind it in a mixie/blender/dry grinder when cool with hing. When it is completely powdered, add grated dry coconut and run the mixie / blender for  a minute to get it evenly mixed. Store it in an airtight container. I usually keep mine in the refrigerator, but you can leave at room temperature too.

To Make the Saaru / Rasam:
To 4 TBSP of the above powder, add about 5 cups of water. Mix and heat till it starts boiling. Add salt to taste and switch off the stove. You can use more powder to get spicier or less as per your taste. In my mom's place, it was served as mentioned, but my in-laws like to drink it with couple of drops of lime juice added just before drinking. Warm the saaru to desired warmth and then add the lime juice and serve. Even though it goes well with rice, I feel it is best consumed as a soup.

Happy Cooking!! Pin It


  1. Rasam is the most terrific and comforting thing I can think of. Not just when you are sick but also when you gorge on heavy foods and need something to aid in digestion. Love the rasam in the bowl.

  2. I agree with you, Mom's made food is simply the best:) No one can come even remotely close to mom's cooking...
    The rasam looks so spicy and tangy...

  3. I just came across your blog and I am so glad I did! This looks fabulous!

  4. My version of pepper rasam is completely different dear..looks very comforting...

  5. Definitely agree with you. The rasam is one of the best comforting foods...especially if it is made by mom.

  6. I agree, there are mom-made dishes that we can't replicate, hopeflly our kids will say the same about us too:)


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