Thursday, April 5, 2012

Horse Gram/ Kollu Rasam

Spring break starts from tomorrow for my son. It is the first break after the Christmas Holiday. He is very excited for the extra hours of sleep :)  He only gets two breaks in one school year. Because of weather, there is no snow to interrupt the school to get the extra day off. But as a parent, it is time to review subjects for the State Exam with him.
Last week, he was down with cold and cough. During the cold season, I often make this Kollu/Horse gram rasam. It works like medicine; a cup of hot rasam will clear the stuffy nose and the cough. He has no problem with spices and drinks like soup. I could be mixed with rice and served for kids.


Kollu/horse gram is less known beans with plenty of medicinal values. It comes in different shades: light green, slightly reddish brown and black. The beans are consumed by human and horse. You should give a plenty of time to soak the beans to reduce the cooking time. It is not often given to kids apart for clearing a bad cold and cough. Because,it is known for weight loss in Tamil Nadu, only consumed by adults weekly once. Personally this one works for the cold for us cannot confirm the weight loss, otherwise, I would have included Horse gram to 365 Days!

If you cannot tolerate the heat I would strongly suggest using only cumin and black pepper powder for the Rasam powder. If you serve with steamed rice- the rasam powder mentioned below works well.

Rasam powder

Rasam powder

  • Black Pepper: 1 tsp
  • Cumin: 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander seeds: 2 tsp
  • Toor dhal: 1/2 tsp
  • One Red chilli (used the round one- less spice)
  • Hing (block): A small piece (Can be omitted) - Replace with powder while seasoning the rasam

The first two ingredients are the key essentials (can be pounded coarsely and used alone for making rasam). I personally don't make big batch, every other day- i use my spice mixer to ground it. It yield about 1 and 1/2 tbsp.  

Method: Roast all together and ground coarsely.

Horse Gram/ Kollu Rasam

Kollu/horse gram rasam


  1. Horse Gram: 3 tbsp
  2. Tamarind: a small key lime size - or lemon size if you are in India
  3. Medium ripe tomato-one
  4. Rasam powder: 1 1/2 tbsp
  5. Turmeric: 1/4 tsp
  6. Salt: to taste

  1. Garlic pods: 2 or 3 crushed slightly 
  2. One broken red chillies
  3. Mustard seeds: 1 tsp
  4. Methi/fennugreek: 1/2 tsp
  5. Curry leaves: few fresh one
  6. Cilantro: few fresh torn into pieces (to use at the end)
  7. Hing: a dash
  8. Oil or Ghee: 1 1/2 tsp

  1. First soak* the horse gram overnight, rinse it and pressure cook with 2 cups of water until 4 whistles.
  2. Ground the cooked beans and at the end - add the tomato and pulse it.
  3. Add a cup of water in tamarind and microwave a minutes. Cool and extract the pulp only.
  4. Now in a bowl add the dhal+ tomato+ Rasam powder and turmeric add little quantity of tamarind extract. Adjust the salt and tamarind
    level. If you feel is less tangy, add the rest of tamarind.
  5. Add 1/2 cup of water , less or more to adjust the rasam and keep in stove.
  6. When the bubble starts foaming remove from the stove
  7. Do the seasoning.
  8. Heat oil, add the hing, followed by red chillies, mustard
    and fennugreek, when they splutter, add the garlic and curry leaves.
    Keep for a few seconds and throw in the bubbling Hot Rasam.
  9. Garnish with cilantro (must)

*If you don't have time to soak overnight- soak an hour the beans and ground it into coarse paste (use it as per recipe)

Important Note or even rules given by elders:
Rasam should be watery and clear like soup.
U should never let the rasam boil- when the bubbles form on top remove from heat.
Add the cilantro at the end, keep slightly close, fully covering the pot will let the greens change color.
Always try to do a small amount - because reheating Rasam will loose the taste.
It is not always possible to do so - store the leftover rasam in non-reactive bowl. tamarind is low acidity food which reacts overtime.
Rasam always depends of someone tastes buds. Though we make regularly- the taste differs each and every day.

Wish my readers a Happy Holy Week!


Manasi said...

I have a small packet of horse gram and now I have this recipe! Thanx! Hope u have a great long weekend and ur son has a lovely, lazy spring break :)

notyet100 said...

Horse gram is new for me ,.even I luv rasam,.wish ya happy weekend ahead

Home Cooked Oriya Food said...

enjoy spring break... lovely rasam... love the earthen pot in which you served...

halal foodie said...

Hi Cham, rasam looks soothing and delicious, we call it kulthi(horsegram),love ur clay hullad

Sumi said...

never made kollu rasam, although make pepper rasam every other day.bookmarked this one.

ruchikacooks said...

aha..telepathy akka...I was about to post similar rasam too- swimming lessons gave appa and pullai cold :(
Kollu rasam looks good, you know hubby hates the smell of it- I love it and hte kollu podi too..

Laavanya said...

After hearing how good kollu is for a cold, I also bought it and make rasam with it when my kids are sick.

Kitchen Flavours said...

One of my friend makes it.....but i never tried it at home...rasam looks that simple rasam powder....

maha said...

really healthy n yummy one.looks nice.

Priya said...

Kollu rasam, one of my fav comforting food, naan appadiye kudipen..enjoy the spring break..

Usha said...

Rasam looks delicious, loved the clay pot you used in the picture !!
Did not know that kollu was good for weight loss, how interesting :)

lata raja said...

It is very healthy to have this rasam once in a way. More interestingly you have detailed the rasam powder in a small quantity which is very good to have a flavoursome rasam.

Kanan said...

Rasam looks inviting. My mouth is watering now.

G.Pavani said...

it has been long time i had this rasam,tempting me very much..

Viki's Kitchen said...

Kollu for 365 days....I couldn't stop laughing:)Like the way you prepared it. Nice recipe and tips dear.

Parita said...

So lovely pictures! a very different rasam..must try someday :)

Bong Mom said...

Love, love the pictures. all the best for the cst.

Maayeka said...

loved the recipe and the gram is also known as kulthi ki daal or kulath,very popular in hilly areas ,and it's soup is very good for removing kidney stones .
loved your beautiful clicks and the cute pots...

Parita said...

Hey Cham! Thanks for getting back :) m good..glad to be back to blogging now :) hope things are well at your end as well!

Namitha said...

Never tried this rasam before.Loved your version of rasam powder. Usually at home we don't add cumin powder :)Hope your lil one is feeling better now

Priya dharshini said...

Agree with what u have said about kollu...Nice clicks with rasam and the powder..