Tomato Rasam, Tomato Charu or Thakkali Rasam

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Tomato Rasam, Tomato Charu or Thakkali Rasam
Tomato Rasam, Tomato Charu or Thakkali Rasam

Winter is creeping up on Mumbai. While it is not time to pull on the woollies as yet, there is a distinct nip in the air early in the morning and around dinner time. It is the time of the year when I pull out recipes for all kind of winter warmers, but my favourites are the assorted types of rasam or charu that we make in South India.

I have already blogged simple Andhra Charu and Nimmikaya Charu (Lemon Rasam). Today, it is the turn of another favourite, Tomato Charu or Thakkali Rasam.


  1. Tomato – 1 Large
  2. Tuvar Dal, Kandi Pappu, or Pigeon Pea – 1/4 Cup
  3. Tamarind – 1″ ball
  4. Charu Podi – 1 tsp
  5. Red Chillies – 2
  6. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  7. Ghee – 1 tsp
  8. Asafoetida or Hing – A Large Pinch
  9. Curry Leaves – 6
  10. Coriander Leaves – A Few
  11. Turmeric Powder – 1/8 tsp
  12. Salt to Taste


  1. Soak the tuvar dal in 1 cup of water for 10 minutes.
  2. Warm 2 cups of water and soak the tamarind in it for 10 minutes.
  3. Pressure cook the tuvar dal with the water for 4 whistles or till the dal is completely mashed.
  4. Mash the dal completely.
  5. Chop the tomato into 1″ pieces.
  6. In a heavy bottomed, heat the ghee.
  7. Add the mustard seeds and wait till they splutter.
  8. Add the curry leaves, cumin seeds, and split red chillies.
  9. Fry for 1 minute.
  10. Add the tomato pieces.
  11. Over medium heat, stir-fry till the tomato pieces are completely stewed or start to get mashed.
  12. Add the charu podi, turmeric powder, and asafoetida.
  13. Mix well.
  14. Squeeze the soaked tamarind to extract the juice.
  15. Discard the tamarind.
  16. Add the tamarind water, mashed dal, and salt to the cooked tomato.
  17. Bring to a boil.
  18. Turn off the heat.
  19. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  20. Serve with hot steamed rice and ghee!

I would love to hear from you!

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