Dal Rasam

Dal Rasam

Famous South Indian dish

Not only is Dal Rasam a famous south Indian dish it is also a hot favourite. Hot as in popular and hot taste wise. It’s the go-to remedy for cough and cold because of its many spices. They work to aid the body in eliminating the cough cold symptoms.

Spicy tangy and delicious

Dal Rasam is a spicy tangy and to-die-for delicious curry that you can either drink like a soup or eat with hot steamed rice. The combination of tangy spicy and a tad sweet flavours come together to make a very tasty dal soup.


Its most redeeming feature is that it is very nutritious and beneficial for health. It’s a favourite anytime of the year although it is the most feel-good food for a cold winter day.

Serve anyway you like it

Dal rasam can be had in a cup or with rice in a bowl. It’s your choice. You can add vegetables to the preparation to make it a wholesome meal. It goes best with steamed rice.

Quick Summary

Dal rasam requires a special blend of spices that give it its unique and distinctive flavour. You can either make this blend of spices at home or you can buy ready to use Rasam Powder.

Split yellow Pigeon peas or Tur dal goes best with this recipe. Prepare your Rasam powder at home. Pressure cook your tur dal and you are ready to make Dal Rasam.

Dal Rasam


Rasam Powder is the key ingredient that makes this dish so tasty. It has a flavour very different from any other dal you may have had. The blend of assorted spices and the tempering along with the tangy taste of tamarind paste gives it just that little bit of extra zest. Given below is the recipe for the Rasam Powder and then the Dal Rasam. 

Course Appetizer
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 3
Calories 120 kcal


For Rasam Powder

  • 1 measure Coriander Seeds
  • 8-10 Curry Leaves
  • 2 tablespoons Chana Dal (split yellow Bengal gram)
  • 1/3rd measure Tur Dal (split pigeon peas)
  • 1/4th cup Black Peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • ½ measure Dry Red Chillies (normal)
  • 1/4th cup Kashmiri Dry Red Chillies (spicy ones)
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder

For Dal

  • 2 measure tur dal (pressure cooked)
  • 2 tablespoon oil
  • 1/4th teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/4th teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/4th teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
  • Few curry leaves
  • 1/4th teaspoon asafoetida or hing
  • 2 tablespoons of Rasam Powder
  • Tamarind paste (add as per your choice)
  • 1 onion cut small
  • 1 large or 2 medium tomatoes cut small
  • Salt to taste
  • Pinch sugar
  • Chopped green coriander
  • 4 measures of water

How to make

For Rasam Powder

  1. Make sure all ingredients are dry and fresh. Wash the curry leaves and dry them well.

  2. In a pan or a wok dry roast the curry leaves and coriander seeds. Roast till they give out an aroma and turn a tad brown. Keep aside

  3. In the same wok, dry roast Tur dal and Chana dal till they turn golden brown and give out an aroma. Keep aside

  4. Dry roast peppercorns and cumin seeds till they give out an aroma. Keep aside

  5. Dry roast the red chillies same as above and keep aside.

  6. Once all the roasted ingredients have cooled down transfer the Tur Dal and Chana dal to your grinder. Grind into a powder. 

  7. Now add the other roasted ingredients and grind to a smooth powder. Your Rasam Powder is ready. 

  8. Store in an airtight jar for future use. 

For Dal Rasam

  1. Take a wok or a saucepan. Put oil and heat.

  2. Add mustard seeds and let them pop and crackle.

  3. Add asafoetida

  4. Add curry leaves

  5. Add turmeric powder

  6. Add red chilli powder

  7. Fry for a minute.

  8. Now add onion and tomatoes salt and sugar. Mix well and fry for 2-3 minutes or till tomatoes a bit squishy.

  9. Add rasam powder and tamarind paste. Mix well and add only 3 tablespoons of your pressure-cooked Tur Dal.

  10. Keep the rest aside for another recipe another day. 

  11. Mix all the ingredients in the wok and add about 4 measure of water.

  12. Your Dal Rasam is a soupy dal not a thick dal like some others. 

  13. Mix well and bring to a boil. Check the taste for salt, and for the tang of tamarind. It should have the zest of tamarind and the spiciness of the other spices without making your throat burn.

  14. Add a wee bit of sugar if you feel the taste is too sharp. Your Dal Rasam should be a well-rounded flavour of all the condiments you added. 

  15. Garnish with chopped green coriander and serve hot with steamed rice. It is the hero of the serving you don’t need anything else to intrude on its taste.  


Dal Rasam is best had hot. Be careful adding the tamarind paste and the red chilli powder because your Rasam Powder is already quite spicy. You can add spiciness later but if it becomes too hot you can only temper the spiciness by adding a little sugar and maybe more water.

  • Your Dal Rasam is a soupy affair but be careful that you don’t add too much water else the flavours will get over diluted.
  • This dish stores well under refrigeration and can be had the next day.
  • The quantity cooked will serve 2-3 depending on what it is being served with.
  • Your measure can be a cup or a glass or a bowl whatever suits your requirement. Some even like to use a measuring cup in which case go with metric figures.
  • Given below are the nutrition facts for Dal Rasam. These are approximate numbers based on a 2000 calorie diet.

One cup of Dal Rasam would contain approximately

  1. Calories from Fat 28
  2. Calories 63
  3. Total Fat 3.1g
  4. Saturated Fat 1.4g
  5. Cholesterol 5.4mg
  6. Sodium 12mg
  7. Potassium 470mg
  8. Total Carbohydrates 8.5g
  9. Dietary Fibre 2.7g
  10. Sugars 4.9g
  11. Protein 2.2g
  12. Vitamin A 32%
  13. Vitamin C 42%
  14. Calcium 4%
  15. Iron 8%

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