This recipe of lemon rasam is really good for cold and coughs. It’s warming, comforting and nourishing if you have a really bad cold.

Tempering is also done in the recipe. What you get is a tangy, spicy, aromatic rasam with the citrusy coriander flavour and the earthy warm flavour from the spices. You can have rasam plain like a soup or also with some steamed rice.


For cooking lentils
¼ cup pigeon pea lentils (tuvar dal or arhar dal)
1 pinch turmeric powder
¾ to 1 cup water for pressure cooking
To be ground coarsely
⅓ cup chopped coriander leaves (cilantro leaves)
2 teaspoon cumin seeds
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 or 2 green chilies, chopped
½ inch ginger, roughly chopped
4 to 5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
tempering and making lemon rasam
1 tablespoon cold processed sesame oil or any oil
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
12 to 15 curry leaves
1 to 2 dry red chilies
1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 to 1.5 cups water, add water as required
2.5 to 3 tablespoon lemon juice, add lemon juice as per taste
salt as required
some coriander leaves for garnishing

Cooking dal
Rinse and then add 1/4 cup tuvar dal or pigeon pea lentils in a pressure cooker along with a pinch of turmeric powder.
Add 3/4 to 1 cup water and pressure cook for 8 to 9 whistles or till the dal has softened and cooked really well.
When the pressure settles down on its own, check the dal and mash with a spoon or wired whisk. Keep the dal aside.
Making lemon rasam
In a small grinder or chutney grinder, take 1/3 cup chopped coriander, 2 tsp cumin seeds, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1 or 2 green chilies (chopped), 1/2-inch ginger (roughly chopped) and 4 to 5 garlic cloves (roughly chopped).
Without adding water grind to a coarse paste. Keep aside.
In a pan or pot, heat 1 tbsp sesame oil or any oil and add 1/2 tsp mustard seeds. Saute till the mustard seeds start crackling.
Then add 12 to 15 curry leaves and 1 to 2 dry red chilies. Saute till the red chilies change their color and darken a bit. Don’t burn them.
Now add the ground coarse paste along with a pinch of asafoetida/hing and 1/4 tsp turmeric powder. Stir very well.
Add the cooked dal and add 1 to 1.5 cups water. Stir well.
Season with salt and again stir.
On a low to medium flame simmer the rasam for 5 to 6 minutes.
Switch off the flame. Wait for 1 minute and then add 2.5 to 3 tbsp lemon juice.
You can add more or less as required and as per your taste. Instead of lemon you can also add lime juice. stir very well.
Garnish with some coriander leaves & serve lemon rasam with steamed rice.