dal rasam, how to make dal rasam recipe | rasam for cold & cough


dal rasam – yet another rasam which is a favorite at home after tomato rasam. this dal rasam was made by mom when all of us would have cold attacks in the winters or monsoons.

it is a spicy one, though i usually make it less spicy. also this dal rasam warms the body and is excellent when has bouts of cold, chill and cough.

as the name suggests, cooked arhar dal or pigeon pea lentils is simmered in a freshly roasted and ground spices with tamarind pulp. so the cooked dal gives some body and texture to this soup like drink and the spices lend their aroma, warmth and flavor along with the sourness from the tamarind.

dal rasam

the spices are roasted and then ground to a semi coarse or fine powder. later to be tempered with mustard, curry leaves and dry red chilies along with the freshly ground rasam powder. this tempered mixture is then added to the cooked dal and simmered with tamarind pulp and some water.

you don’t need rasam powder to make this dal rasam. this dal rasam is best with some steamed rice. you can drink it plain like a soup also. at home i always serve rasam with rice. dal rasam recipe

if you are looking for more rasam recipes then do check drumstick rasammilagu jeera rasamtamarind rasam recipe and easy rasam recipe without rasam powder.

dal rasam recipe below:

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dal rasam
dal rasam - spicy rasam recipe made from pigeon pea lentils or arhar dal.
CUISINE: south indian
INGREDIENTS (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
main ingredients:
  • ½ or ⅔ cup tuvar-arhar dal/pigeon pea lentils
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp urad dal/spilt and skinned black gram (optional)
  • 1 or 2 dry red chilies
  • a pinch of hing/asafoetida
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 or 2.5 cups water
  • 1 tbsp seedless tamarind soaked in ½ cup water
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • salt as required
for dry roasting and then grinding to semi coarse or fine powder
  • 2-3 dry red chilies
  • 8-10 methi seeds
  • ½ tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  1. first take all the whole spices meant to make the rasam powder.
  2. dry roast in a medium hot frying pan till the spices are browned and become fragrant.
  3. once they are cooled, in a dry grinder or coffee grinder, grind these spices to a semi coarse or fine powder. keep aside.
  4. in a pressure cooker boil the arhar dal till they completely cooked and soft.
  5. with a wooden spoon or wired whisk, mash the dal lightly.
  6. in another pan, heat oil.
  7. add the mustard seeds and urad dal.
  8. fry till the mustard seeds start popping and the urad dal becomes golden.
  9. lower the flame and add the curry leaves & dry red chilies and fry for some seconds.
  10. now add the turmeric powder and asafoetida.
  11. stir and add the roasted ground rasam powder.
  12. stir quickly and add the above tempered mixture to the dal or add the dal to this mixture.
  13. stir and add tamarind pulp, water along with salt.
  14. bring to a boil first and then simmer for 8-9 minutes on a low or medium flame till all the flavors have blended well with each other. the raw aroma of the tamarind also has to go away.
  15. garnish the dal rasam with coriander leaves and serve hot, plain or with some steamed rice.

{ 10 Responses }

  1. Shayna says

    I love this recipe and make it often especially when I am ill, it helps with my chest congestion and cough so much! I was wondering your thoughts on using tamarind concentrate instead of the pulp (sometimes the pulp is hard to find). The directions on the pulp don’t make much sense to me so it’s always been trial and error with the amount to use.

    • says

      i haven’t used tamarind concentrate. so i will be unable to tell you how much has to be added. what i suggest is to add water first. then add the tamarind concentrate. just a bit. check the taste and keep on adding in bits, till you get the desired taste. then allow for the rasam to simmer for some minutes till the raw flavors of the tamarind goes away.

  2. soumya says

    All your recipes are awesome. I try your recipes with 100% confidence all the time and it always comes out yum! Thanks for this rasam recipe.

  3. Neela Iyer says


    first of all rasam is a watery concoction and tuvar dal shd be added in v.little qty nt the 1 as u hv memtioned.

    the rest ingedients are all rite.

    • says

      i know neela. this is my mom’s recipe and i have stuck to the proportions of dal and other ingredients which she usually ads. so this rasam is not watery but thin like a thin dal. and thats why it goes very well with steamed rice.