Archive for the ‘Soup’ Category

Mulligatawny Soup

Thursday, December 10th, 2009


Quite a common entry in the menu cards on Indian/American restaurants- the Mulligatawny Soup. Made of lentils, vegetables and mild spices,this soup is my hubbys favorite soup and whenever this soup is listed on the menu, without a doubt he would choose it as an appetizer. I have seen a lot of people pronounce it stylishly and little did I know that the soup had originated from Tamilnadu in India, the place where I am from.

The name Mullagu means pepper and Thanni(tawny) is just water. So all in all, Mulagu Thanni  is just plain pepper water. Because of the British rule in India, I guess they liked the taste but couldnt pronounce it hence it became mulligatawny. Or may be it was a variety of Rasam (a soup like dish with pepper, tomatoes, lemon and lentils) as the ingredients are almost similar. Nice Nah? Now a days when hubby orders Mulligatawny soup,he looks at me and gives a smile :)

Speaking of Mulligatawny soup, there is an episode in Seinfled where George and Jerry are regular customers in a Soup Place serving an amazing Chicken Mulligatawny Soup. Elaine doesnt get a chance to taste it as her attitude irks the shop owner. After hilarious twists, in the end, Elaine somehow gets hold of the recipe for the soup and makes the owner pack up!

This is my version of the Mulligatawny soup. To be honest, sometimes I even use a bit of rasam powder in the soup to give it a secret kick of flavor and spice.  The vegetables I add in the soup depends on what I have in hand, but usually I use potatoes, peas and carrots.


Red onion-chopped- 1/4 cup

Potato- 3 (medium)

Tomatoes- 2

Frozen peas-1/4 cup

Carrots- 3 (medium size)

Chopped Ginger- 1 tsp

Chopped Garlic- 1 tsp

Pepper Powder- 1/2 tsp

Turmeric Powder- 1/2 tsp

Vegetable Bullion cube- 1 cube

Salt- to taste

Garam Masala Powder- 3/4 tsp

Roasted Cumin Powder- 1/2 tsp

Red lentils (Masoor dal) and yellow moong dal- together – 1/2 cup

Coriander leaves- to garnish

Lemon juice- 1 tbsp

Water- 3-4 cups


Wash and pressure cook the dals. Mash and keep aside.

Chop onions, tomatoes, carrots and potatoes into small cubes. In a saucepan, add water, bullion cube,peas, turmeric powder, salt, chopped veggies , ginger and garlic and bring it to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes till vegetables are tender.

Add the mashed dal to the pot, along with black pepper powder, garam masala powder, roasted cumin powder and simmer for another 5-7 minutes. Add lemon juice and mix well.

Check for salt and spices. Re-season if needed. You can either serve this soup as a chunky mix of veggies in liquid. If you want uniform texture, use a potato masher and mash the cooked veggies and dal to a smooth texture.

Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve hot.

This mulligatawny soup can be served with jeera poppadams or any crunchy bread.

I am sending this vegetable mulligatawny soup to Srivalli’s My Legume Love Affair -Eighteenth helping, an event originally started by Susan.

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Clear Tomato Soup

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

I like making soups for dinner along with some rotis or simple pasta but I dont get to make it taste like restaurants do. I have tried adding cornflour to sweetcorn soup yet I feel something is missing. I blanch and puree and simmer the tomatoes but its all gooey and thick and not like a simple clear soup, when I look for a consistency of a  Rasam. I tried this version of tomato soup from the Cookbook I was reading last month. It turned out to be  a soup with overpowering flavors of spices and I couldnt taste the tomato. I usually use lesser amounts of spice while trying out recipes but this one turned out to be really spicy.

The only part I liked about it was using a sieve to extract the contents and it did not require any flour to thicken it. I tried making the soup with different veggies and other combinations and in the end I liked this adapted version of tomato soup and its a keeper.This is how it goes:

Ingredients(Serves 2)

Ripe Tomato- 3 big

Cinnamon sticks- 2

Vegetable Bullion cubes-1 (vegetable stock soup cubes)

Whole black peppercorns- 1/2 tsp

Garlic- 2 cloves

Salt- to taste

White pepper powder- to garnish

Coriander leaves- 2 tbsp

Butter- 1/2 tsp

Water- 4 cups


Rough chop the tomatoes. In a pan, mix tomatoes, peppercorns,garlic,cinnamon sticks,and salt. Dissolve bullion cubes in approximately 4 cups of water. Add this water to the pan with tomatoes and cover and let it simmer for 20 minutes.

Once the tomatoes are thoroughly cooked and is well mixed with the bullion-cinnamon water, switch off the stove. Mash the tomatoes well with a masher along with the peppers and cinnamon(Do not grind or blend in a blender, just mash with a fork or masher).

After this stage, I just poured the entire contents of the pan into a sieve and let the juices pass through into another pan and discarded the tomato pulp,pepper and cinnamon stick that was collected in the sieve.

Reheat the extracted soup in the pan for 1-2 minutes. Switch off. Garnish with coriander leaves and butter. Taste for salt and pepper and re-season. This tomato soup is filling on its own, but you can also serve it with jeera poppadams or garlic bread.

When I made this soup I thought of a perfect compliment to serve with the soup- Cutlets.And I wish I had one of these cutlets by SunshineMom to go with my soup! A bite of the crunchy cutlet and a ladle of soup…That would be heavenly.

I am sending this soup to Monthly Mingle-Soups hosted this month by TongueTicklers and started by Meetha.

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