Monday, 11 November 2013

Amla Cucumber Rasam

There are two types of gooseberries- Chinna Nellikaai and the larger variety. Most of the households in South India have a Nellikaai tree in their backyard. This fruit grows in regions where the climate is hot because it has properties to cool the body and quench thirst.
This fruit is known for its medicinal properties and used extensively in Indian cooking for a long time. This recipe is "Nellikaai Rasam" but can be easily converted into "Nellikaai Soup" just by blending all the ingredients and serving it in individual soup bowls. The taste of the ginger hits you first followed by the sour taste and after you swallow, there is a wonderful lingering sweetness in your mouth. I always try to fix some new rasam….since ‘rasam’ is the comfort food for most of the non-vegetarians like me! Anything that is tangy…I try to make rasam out of it.
A brief account of its medicinal properties coming after this wonderful recipe.


Prep time: 15 mins|Cook time: 15 mins|Serves: 6 persons




6 nos


1 no



Moong  dal

2 tbsp.

Rasam powder

1 tbsp.

Turmeric powder

½ tsp.

Ginger -green chilli paste

½ tsp.

Garlic crushed

1 tbsp.


Few sprigs

 To temper

Sesame Oil


Mustard seeds

½  tsp.

Cumin seeds

½ tsp.

Dry red chillies




Curry leaves

2 -3 sprigs


To taste



1. To chop the gooseberries, just cut it as you would cut an apple on all sides leaving the core intact. Wash and clean the whole goose berries. Now slice their flesh alone. Remove the seed and discard. amla rasam 2. Blend them to fine puree using very limited water. Cook the moong dal until mushy. I washed, peeled, cut and ground the cucumbers with a cup of water. amla1 Then I added 2 tbsp. of lemon juice and some salt. Now filter them to have rich berry juice. Set aside.In a deep iron wok, heat few spoons of oil. Let the mustard seeds sputter; now add cumin seeds, dry red chilies and Hing. amla23. Now add tomatoes till it gets mushy. Then add salt, turmeric and rasam powder (pepper cumin powders) to it. add the mashed green ginger garlic coarse paste. Stir for some time.Pour the amla juice and the moong dal with water.(app 1 cup of water).ala3 4. Remove from heat quickly. Too much of boiling will deplete the vitamins! After the rasam gets warm ,pour the cucumber and lemon juice.Check for salt.amla4  4. I also garnished with some cilantro. It tasted AWESOME Hope you will try to make this rasam and enjoy it IMG_20131112_102250 5. Serve steaming hot along with plain steam cooked rice.


Never heat up the cucumber juices if serving with rice, ensure the rice is piping hot to compensate for the lukewarm rasam.Refrigerate if you want to have it as a soup.Do not cook the gooseberries before as the rasam will not have any flavor.

Medicinal Properties:
       As we all know the gooseberry is very rich in Vitamin C more than orange. It has antiviral and antimicrobial properties - meaning it can fight against inflammation, cancer, fever, reduce cholesterol and blood glucose levels.

In Ayurveda:
All parts of the tree are used: fruit, seed, leaves, root, bark and flowers. According to Ayurveda this fruit is sour and astringent in taste with sweet, bitter and pungent secondary tastes.     

It is used for Rejuvenation purposes: promotes longevity, enhances digestion, treats constipation, reduces asthma, fever and cough, purifies the blood and liver, strengthens the heart, brightens eyes, stimulates hair growth and enhance intellect.
Amla has been a major component in beauty therapies [for hair and skin] for centuries


  1. Interesting rasam..will try this one day

  2. Yummy and healthy rasam.. Nice twist to regular rasam.. Love your idea..

  3. rasam or soup def sounds very good love the combo :)

  4. Delicious rasam love it, Here I only get frozen nelliakai, I will try this one. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Always I go for fresh ones dear.But in case if not available opt for frozen ones or try with amla juices available in super markets

  5. Delicious and innovative rasam I can fell the taste..

  6. wow...that was an innovative idea.....supeb

  7. Woow..Super rasam!! I still remember the taste which I tasted last time when I am in India.. My mum usually makes this..

  8. Tried this rasam really good dish remembers my mom.


Ragi(finger millet) Poori