Beetroot Rasam (South Indian soup)
This vegan, gluten-free South Indian beetroot rasam (soup) is spicy, garlicy, tangy, and gingery and is sure to keep you warm during the cold winter.
For Rasam (soup)
- 1 yellow onion (or any other kind, finely diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 tsp fresh ginger (grated)
- 4 red beets (medium, finely diced)
- 1 tsp rasam powder (can sub with sambhar powder)
- 4 1/2 cups water
- 3/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt (or any other kind, or to taste)
- 1 tsp ginger (fresh, grated)
- 2 tbsp moong lentils (can sub with toor daal (pigeon peas) or red lentils)
- 1 cup tomatoes (canned, chopped or sub with fresh tomatoes)
- 2 tsp tamarind paste*
- 1/2 cup cilantro (for garnish, optional)
For tempering spices
- 2 tsp avocado oil (or any other)
- 1 tsp mustard seeds (black)
- 5 curry leaves
- 1 dried red chilli (or two if you want to go spicier)
To make Rasam (soup)
Soak moong lentils (or the kind you are using) for at least 1-2 hours to soften before cooking. Once soaked, rinse thoroughly before adding to the soup.
In a heavy-bottom pot, sweat finely diced onions with 1/4 tsp salt using Ditch-the-oil cooking method for about 2-3 minutes. Alternatively, you can use a teaspoon of oil to sweat the onions.
Once onions are cooked to a softer texture, add garlic, grated ginger, diced raw beets, remaining 1/2 tsp of salt, moong lentils, rasam powder, and water. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Once boiled, reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for about 20 minutes or till the beets are cooked to a soft texture.
Add tomatoes and tamarind paste and cook for another 20 minutes. Mash the beets and cooked lentils slightly with a flat-bottom spoon; don't over mash. Turn off heat and add the tempering.
For tempering spices
Heat oil in a steel flat-bottom serving spoon or small pan ( a cast iron pan or spoon also works). Add a couple of mustard seeds to check the temperature. Once mustard seeds start to crackle, add all the mustard seeds, curry leaves, and dried red chili. Cover with a lid and heat till seeds stop crackling. Add the tempering to beetroot rasam (soup) and stir to mix well. Add chopped cilantro before serving.
*you can find tamarind paste in Indian and Asian stores. If you don't have tamarind paste, you can sub it either with 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar or add 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice. Be sure to add the lemon juice after turning the heat off, before adding tempering.
**if you don't have curry leaves, add 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro after adding tempering to beetroot rasam (soup).
Serving suggestions: Vegetarian: Serve with a dollop of plain Green yogurt.
- blending the soup yields better texture, especially for veggie-averse family members.
- Roasting beets before adding to the rasam cuts down the cooking time by 30 minutes (Find how to roast beets here).
Serving: 1Cup (heaping)Calories: 120kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 4gFat: 2gSodium: 595mgPotassium: 559mgFiber: 5gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 200IUVitamin C: 37.1mgCalcium: 60mgIron: 2mg