One of the many things that both M & S did during their "boring" week home was to click umpteen pictures of anything and everything I cooked. So thanks to M is this recipe for mullangi saaru (radish rasam), which otherwise might not have seen the light of the day here :)
I usually make plain saarus with vegetable heavy palyas on the side. Sometimes I include vegetables in the saaru and when I do, it is usually mooli. Both the kids like this and that is a bonus.
True to my short-cut heavy ways, the saaru also get done faster than, say, how my mom used to make. Usually the dal is cooked separately and then the saaru pudi (rasam powder) is added, which has to be boiled on low for a long time in order to smoothen the sharpness of the masala. Then the seasonings and tadka are added later. I pretty much cook everything in the pressure cooker. With a rather large one, I even cook rice, dal and sometimes veggies (like I did for the beans bhaji here) together in one shot, though in separate containers.
Toor dal - 1/2 cup
Radish - daikon 3-4 (or a bunch of small, red) cut into thin roundels
Tomato - 1 medium, halved
1 heaped tsp saaru pudi or rasam powder (or to taste)
1/2 tsp thick tamarind concentrate (about a lemon sized amount, if using raw)
1.5-2 tsp shredded jaggery
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
salt to taste
1 tsp chopped cilantro
1 tsp coconut shreds
Ghee, mustard seeds, jeera, curry leaves, heeng
Pour dal into a vessel that fits into a pressure cooker and wash with water multiple times, until clean. Add 4-5 cups of water, rasam powder, turmeric powder, radish and tomato.
Set it inside the pressure cooker, stacking along with other containers (like for rice), if using.
Cook until the dal is soft (2 whistles in my cooker but it can vary).
In a pan, heat ghee and do the tadka. Add the cooked dal, salt, tamarind and jaggery. With the ladle, squish the tomato (or you could just use chopped tomatoes in the first place but somehow, I end up following my mom's way each time) and mix well into the dal.
Add more water for a thinner dal. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Once it comes to a boil, add chopped cilantro and coconut.
Serve with rice and ghee (yes, more ghee!)