Dried Neem flower soup (Veppam poo rasam)

DSC01937

Today I bring you a very traditional recipe, a treasured recipe from my mother. A very healthy soup or rasam made with dried neem flowers. I have not seen neem flowers sold anywhere outside India. Neem is known for its therapeutic (antibiotic, anti-diabetic) properties and has been used in Ayurvedic medicine since ancient times.

The dried flowers can be bought in herb shops in India. My mom just collects flowers falling off a neem tree in the yard of our house, cleans them and dries them in the sun. How simple! She gets me a packet of this whenever she gets to visit me. “Make this at least once a month, it is a good for the digestive system”. I have always liked this ‘rasam’ (‘ras’ in Sanskrit, meaning extract) that is traditionally eaten in our home mixed with rice in the main course, but I love it just as a soup, slightly bitter, sour and tangy!

DSC01940

Taking this soup to folks at Fiesta Friday #34Β hosted by Selma and Elaine.

Neem flower rasam

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

Neem flowers- 2 tbsp.

tamarind- a small amount (or 1/2 tbsp. tamarind paste)

tomato- 1 medium

red chilly- 1 or 2

asafoetida powder- a pinch

salt- to taste

water- 2-3 cups

ghee (clarified butter)- 1 tsp.

mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp.

Method:

* Extract juice from tamarind by soaking it in warm water and squeezing it out.

* Add mustard seeds to ghee in a pan, wait till they sputter. Then add red chilly and neem flowers and roast gently on low heat till an aroma develops.

* Add finely chopped tomato, water, tamarind paste (or extract from whole tamarind), asafoetida powder. Let it come to a boil.

* Lower the heat and let it come to a boil one more time.

* Serve warm.

Note:

* A small amount of well-mashed, cooked lentils (toor or split pigeon peas) may be added to make this a more filling soup.

* Some curry leaves can be added for more flavor.

Advertisements

28 responses to “Dried Neem flower soup (Veppam poo rasam)

  1. Pingback: Meals with Mom | Fiesta Friday #34 | The Novice Gardener·

  2. Oh wow – this sounds so delicious – I must look for neem flowers in the Indian shops when I go next. Thank you so much for sharing this family classic with us at Fiesta Friday, Apsara! Have a wonderful week!

    Like

  3. Wow…so you get home picked neem flowers! I have heard neem tree is very medicinal. I have not tried this rasam but at home I have a neem tree and must start collecting its flowers and try this.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s