Rasam Tomato Soup

(“Rasam” means delicious)

Modified from this recipe for Indian tomato soup from Food.com and this one from Indian.Food.com.   Changes are because of what is actually available at local stores this time of year, what is in my kitchen already and ingredients we know and love.

5 small tomatoes, quartered
3 garlic cloves
8 cups water
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped curry leaves
1/4 cup oil
5 or 6 fresh jalapeno peppers, cut into small pieces
1 Tablespoon garam masala
1/2  Tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 Tablespoon ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon salt (Do not be stingy with the salt)
1 Tablespoon mustard seeds


Puree the quartered tomatoes with the garlic, cilatro, curry leaves and half the chilis in a  food processor. Set aside.

Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan.

Add the tomato-garlic puree, the garam masala powder, cumin, black pepper, and salt and simmer 5 minutes.

For the tempering oil:
Combine the oil and mustard seeds in a small frying pan or saucepan over medium-high heat. Cover (the mustard seeds splatter and pop) and cook until you hear the mustard seeds crackle, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the chiles and cook uncovered, stirring, until they start to brown, about 30 seconds. Pour immediately into the soup and stir. 


Serve hot.

Chuck’s fabulous kale salad recipe

Chop raw kale into itty-bitty bites (like you would shred cabbage for coleslaw)  ; add toasted walnuts and diced avocado; toss with good balsamic vinegar.  (Don’t use cheap vinegar, come off the money, it makes a difference.  The sweetness of real balsamic totally balances the bitterness of the raw kale)  OMG!!!  It is so umami-full. And holy-shit, it’s good for you.

Edit from Chuck 2:1 olive oil + balsamic.  I didn’t realize there was oil.