Very Berry Rasam
- Salt (as per taste)
- Mustard Seeds
- Cumin Seeds
- Asafetida (heeng)
- Minced ginger
- Chopped Curry Leaves
- Crushed peppercorns
- Mashed lentils
- Small portion of jaggery
- Berries puree (post sieving the seeds)
- Heat a tablespoon of ghee in a pan and throw in some mustard seeds.
- When they start crackling, add a teaspoon of cumin seeds, a pinch of asafetida, minced ginger and some chopped curry leaves.
- The puree of the berries (after sieving the seeds) is then added to the pan, followed by a pinch of turmeric and a few crushed peppercorns.
- Bring it to a rolling boil. Add some mashed lentils to the rasam and bring it to one boil before removing it from the fire.
- Add a small portion of jaggery at the end to enhance the taste.
- For the puree, if the berries/fruits are ripe, wash them under cold water and blend them in a food processor /blender. If they’re unripe, steam it for a couple of minutes and then puree them. Pass them through a sieve to remove any clumps and/or seeds.
It’s summer time and we love our weekend mornings! It’s no secret – we get to visit the farmer’s market early and spend our mornings there! The sight of garden fresh in-season fruits and vegetables, the smell of freshly baked breads, tongue tickling jams and marmalades, a plethora of eating joints – your taste buds reap the benefits of a trip to the market.
I take my daughter – who’s all of 19 months to the market every week and I find this the perfect way of teaching her the importance of eating healthy. We always come home laden with an assortment of fruits and vegetables. One of our regular purchases is berries – strawberries, blackberries and raspberries and blueberries.
I introduced berries for my daughter well before she turned one. They are packed with essential vitamins and antioxidants and in my belief, the more brightly colored – the more they are dense in nutrition. These berries reduce the impact of UTI causing bacteria, thus making it a great fruit choice. They contain Vitamin C which helps the body to heal wounds, absorb iron from foods and fight infections, plus it contributes to healthy gums, teeth and bones. Vitamin K – needed for blood to clot properly – is also present in blueberries.
In the early stages, I gave them in the form of puree. Now that my daughter is well used to solid food, I give them as finger foods – she loves to snack on them. And berries swirled into natural yoghurt make good dessert.
But with kids, especially picky eaters like my daughter – there’s always a need for change; and as a mother, it’s tough coming up with new dishes to match the many moods of my little one. On one such day when my daughter decided to go on a hunger strike, I came across this post in a food blog Spices & Aroma which talked about preparing Rasam (a South Indian soup) with seasonal fruits in place of tamarind juice. Voila – I started experimenting and bang! Works wonders on your taste buds.
Rasam is a traditional dish prepared almost every day in a typical South Indian home. A hot steamy concoction with a variety of spice, tomatoes and lentils, it is generally eaten along with rice or served separately as soup. This is also one of the first foods that I introduced to my daughter after she turned 6 months old. So here’s the slight variation of the Rasam prepared with tangy fruits like oranges, plums and berries like strawberries and raspberries.
So what purpose does this rasam serve? It eases bowel movements hence relieving your little one from constipation. This dish is full of antioxidants thereby protecting the body against the attack of free radicals. It’s easily digestible and prevents the formation of gas and reduces flatulence. Rich in vitamins and contains a wealth of minerals – this is definitely one of the well balanced meals that you can whip up for your little one.
The goodness of the fruits and the dal – double bonanza! Revel in its delicious taste!